MTECHTIPS;-Gold Prices Turn Lower as U.S. Dollar Rebounds

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MTECHTIPS;-Gold Prices Turn Lower as U.S. Dollar Rebounds

MTECHTIPS-Gold prices turned lower on Thursday, as the release of mostly positive U.S. data pushed the greenback higher, although concerns over protectionist U.S. policies and fresh turmoil in Washington continued to linger. Comex gold futures were down 0.47% at $1,319.6 a troy ounce by 08:45 a.m. ET (12:45 GMT). The U.S. Labor Department reported on Thursday that initial jobless claims decreased by 4,000 last week to 226,000, compared to expectations for a fall to 230,000. At the same time, a separate report showed that the Empire State manufacturing index rose to 22.5 this month from 13.10 in February, beating forecasts for a reading of 15.2. On a less positive note, the Philadelphia Fed’s manufacturing index fell to 22.3 in March from 25.8 the previous month, confounding expectations for a reading of 23.2. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.17% at 89.90. Gold is sensitive to moves in the dollar. A stronger dollar makes gold more expensive for holders of foreign currency