Gold futures score highest settlement in 3 months

San Francisco (May 140  Gold futures rose for a third straight session on Thursday, settling at their highest since mid-February on continued support from recent weakness in the U.S. dollar, as traders assessed the latest economic data for hints on the metal’s investment appeal.

Gold for June delivery on Comex GCM5, -0.32%  rose $7, or 0.6%, to settle at $1,225.20 an ounce. That was the highest settlement for prices, based on the most-active contracts, since Feb. 13.

July silver SIN5, +0.20%  also gained 24.4 cents, or 1.4%, to $17.465 an ounce.

The Labor Department said the number of people making initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 1,000 to 264,000, remaining at a 15-year low. Economists had forecast claims to rise to 275,000.

Producer price dip points to inflation held in check

A dip in producer prices points to inflation being held in check.

Gold traded slightly lower after the data, but downside proved limited. Separately, data also showed U.S. producer prices fell 0.4% in April, compared with forecasts for no change.

Gold has been underpinned in part by a weaker dollar DXY, +0.00%  and lackluster economic data, which has seen investors push back the expected timing of the Federal Reserve’s next rate hike. Tighter monetary policy is seen as a negative for gold.

Prices climbed a total of more than $35 an ounce over the past two trading sessions. The recent jump in gold combined with the extended volatility in major government bonds and the markets “are saying something is badly amiss somewhere,” said Adrian Ash, head of research at BullionVault. “But it’s not obvious what or where.”

For now, Fawad Razaqzada, analyst at, said “the ongoing uncertainty about the future of Greece, among other things, continues to weigh on the European stock markets, further boosting the appeal of gold.”

In a report issued Thursday, the World Gold Council said global demand for gold fell 1% in the first quarter compared with a year ago to 1,079 metric tons. But the report also said that for the full year, total global demand is likely to rise to between 4,200 and 4,300 metric tons from 3,924 metric tons last year.

In other metals trading, July platinum PLN5, -0.22% rose $11.60, or 1%, to $1,162.40 an ounce, while June palladium PAM5, +0.26% dropped $9.90, or 1.3%, to $779.50 an ounce. July copper HGN5, -0.14%  fell just over half a cent, or 0.2%, to $2.924 a pound.

Source: MarketWatch