Gold up as U.S. election jitters

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CHICAGO,  (Xinhua) — Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose on Friday as jitters over next week’s U.S. Election raised the metal’s attractiveness as a haven.

The most active gold contract for December delivery rose 1.2 U.S. dollars, or 0.09 percent, to settle at 1,304.50 dollars per ounce.

An initial dip in gold was quickly bought into as investors remained on edge ahead of Tuesday’s vote.

As Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump gains in the polls, “gold’s appeal strengthens as a safe-haven asset: investors hedging risk via gold, as we saw post-Brexit,” said George Cassell, metals senior specialist at S&P Global Platts.

Gold was given another support as the U.S. Dollar Index fell by 0.09 to 97.05 as of 1730 GMT. The index is a measure of the dollar against a basket of major currencies. Gold and the dollar typically move in opposite directions, which means if the dollar goes up, gold futures will fall as gold, measured by the dollar, becomes more expensive for investors.

The October employment situation report was released by the U.S. Department of Labor on Friday showed the employment rate decreasing by 0.1 percent to 4.9 percent, and nonfarm payrolls increasing by 161,000. Analysts also noted a better-than-expected increase in average hourly earnings which added 0.4 percent during the month of October.

Many investors believe that this big jobs report has overridden the Automated Data Processing and jobless claims report released earlier this week, and that the labor market is at or near full employment.

This gave ammunition to the U.S. Federal Reserve’ s doves, but right now investors believe the Fed may raise rates from 0.50 to 0.75 during the December FOMC meeting. According to the CME Group’ s Fedwatch tool, the current implied probability of a hike from 0.50 to at least 0.75 is at 67 percent at the December meeting and 68 percent for the February meeting. Analysts note that this is down from a week ago, which saw expectations in the high 70 percent range.

Silver for December delivery fell 4.5 cents, or 0.24 percent, to close at 18.371 dollars per ounce. Platinum for January delivery added 10.1 dollars, or 1.02 percent, to close at 1004.50 dollars per ounce.

Editor: Mu Xuequan