Gold eases as stocks gain on robust U.S. jobs data

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This photo shows gold bars stacked in rows.

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Gold prices edged lower in holiday-thinned trading on Monday as robust U.S. jobs data fueled hopes for a rapid economic recovery and bolstered global equities, denting bullion’s appeal.

Spot gold was down 0.1% at $1,726.80 per ounce, as of 1132 GMT. U.S. gold futures were unchanged at $1,727.80 per ounce.

Most markets in Europe were closed for the Easter holiday.

“The stellar March non-farm payrolls print is ramping up optimism surrounding the U.S. economic recovery,” which in turn is boosting risk-on sentiment and dampening bullion demand, FXTM market analyst Han Tan said.

“Should the hard data continue to warrant more risk-taking activities in the markets, traditional safe havens are likely to struggle against the risk-on tide,” Tan said.

Global stocks rose to a 1-1/2-month high after data last week showed the U.S. economy created the most jobs in seven months in March, aided by vaccine rollouts and additional pandemic relief. [MKTS/GLOB]

Investors are now awaiting U.S. services and non-manufacturing PMI data later in the day and minutes from the Federal Reserve’s last policy meeting on Wednesday.

U.S. President Joe Biden’s announcement of a long-awaited $2 trillion-plus job plan last week has raised some concerns over inflation.

“So far, the Fed is quite committed to keep interest rates unchanged until the end of 2023, but if inflation increases … then they will achieve their long term objective sooner than expected,” said Jigar Trivedi, commodities analyst at Mumbai-based broker Anand Rathi Shares.

“If that happens, we are going to see an increase in interest rates and that will be negative for gold prices.”

Silver fell 0.2% to $24.91 per ounce and palladium was down 1% at $2,638.94.

Platinum dipped 0.6% to $1,202.41 per ounce after hitting its highest since March 18 earlier in the session at $1,218.

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