Gold Price Holds Gain on Rate Outlook After Jobs Data; Palladium Drops

London (May 10)  Gold held an advance as investors gauged the outlook for higher interest rates after data showed that U.S. payrolls increased and unemployment fell while wage gains were limited. Palladium dropped from an eight-week high.

Bullion for immediate delivery added as much as 0.2 percent to $1,190.54 an ounce and was at $1,190.05 at 8:55 a.m. in Singapore, according to Bloomberg generic pricing. The metal rose 0.3 percent on Friday after the Labor Department release to cap the first weekly gain in a month. Gold in Shanghai fell.

Prices are little changed this year as traders assess the probable timing of a U.S. rate increase by parsing data releases for clues on the strength and durability of the recovery. The Federal Reserve is watching the labor market for signs that it can sustain higher borrowing costs before lifting a benchmark rate for the first time since 2006. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell for the fourth straight week after figures on Friday.

“Gold prices mildly rose, supported by a weaker U.S. dollar, despite a pick-up in non-farm payrolls,” Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. wrote in a note.

The 223,000 increase in payrolls last month followed a revised 85,000 gain in March that was the smallest since June 2012, the data showed. The April figure was close to the median forecast in a Bloomberg survey that called for a 228,000 advance. While the U.S. jobless rate fell to 5.4 percent, the lowest since May 2008, wage growth remained limited.

Gold for June delivery traded at $1,189 an ounce on the Comex from $1,188.90 on Friday. Most-active futures climbed 1.2 percent last week, the biggest weekly increase since the period to March 27.

Bullion of 99.99 percent purity lost 0.1 percent to 237.40 yuan a gram ($1,188.24 an ounce) on the Shanghai Gold Exchange. China’s central bank cut interest rates, effective from Monday, for the third time in six months to support the economy.

Silver for immediate delivery rose 0.1 percent to $16.4896 an ounce, while platinum was little changed at $1,142.30 an ounce. Palladium declined 0.2 percent to $798 an ounce after rising to $803.61 on Friday, the highest level since March 11.

Source: Bloomberg