Gold prices gave up most of its gains as the dollar rose and safe haven demand ebbed after earlier prices rose as U.S. jobs data dampened expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates.
The precious metal strengthened after the U.S. launched cruise missiles at an airbase in Syria, sparking concerns of an escalation in the Syrian civil war. U.S. President Donald Trump said he ordered missile strikes against a Syrian airfield from which a deadly chemical weapons attack was launched.
The air strike came during a two-day summit between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping which, on Thursday, had a strong focus on trade and North Korea’s military program. Trump had warned that he would be ready to act unilaterally to address North Korea’s nuclear program if China does not step up to help in the matter.
Gold demand in Asia remained soft this week, with premiums in China notching a slight uptick and those in India remaining unchanged, as higher prices kept physical buyers at bay. Indian demand for the yellow metal fell this week primarily due to a rally in overseas rates, though an appreciating rupee capped upside in local prices.
Dealers in India were charging a premium of up to $1 an ounce this week over official domestic prices, unchanged from the last week. Gold reserves value fell to $73.74 billion at the end of March, from $74.376 billion at end-February, data published on the People’s Bank of China website also showed. In top consumer China, premiums were around $10 to $12 per ounce against the international benchmark, up from last week’s to $8 to $10. — Neal Bhai Reports