Gold heads for best week in three on dollar weakness

Gold held steady on Friday as investors awaited fresh catalysts, although prices were on track to post their best week in three, helped by a weaker dollar.

FUNDAMENTALS

Spot gold was steady at $1,825.21 per ounce by 0045 GMT. Prices were up 0.7% so far in the week. U.S. gold futures slipped 0.1% to $1,825.40.

The dollar headed for its first losing week in three as new signs of weakness in the U.S. jobs market dented investor expectations about the pace of a pandemic recovery.

U.S. jobless claims fell slightly last week as the labor market continued to tread water, but a drop in new COVID-19 cases has raised cautious optimism that momentum could pick up by the spring.

President Joe Biden plans to ask Congress this month to invest heavily in infrastructure after his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 aid package winds its way through Congress in the next few days without significant Republican support.

Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping held their first phone call on Thursday as leaders and appeared at odds on most issues, even as Xi warned confrontation would be a “disaster” for both nations.

A slower-than-expected vaccine rollout and the rise of coronavirus variants may make attaining herd immunity against COVID-19 difficult, but that should not stop the economy from rebounding, according to a U.S. central banker.

Spot platinum fell 1.3% to $1,218.67 an ounce, but was set to post its best week since early December, with a gain of 8.5%.

Silver was unchanged at $26.94 and palladium eased 0.1% to $2,342.61.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0700 UK GDP Est 3M/3M Dec
0700 UK GDP Estimate MM, YY Dec
0700 UK Manufacturing Output MM Dec
0700 UK GDP Prelim QQ, YY Q4
1500 US U Mich Sentiment Prelim Feb

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