Gold prices moved higher on Friday as rising coronavirus cases, uncertainties over Brexit and U.S. stimulus, and worries about growth boosted the commodity’s safe-haven appeal.
Traders were also betting the Federal Reserve will come out with some stimulus measures at their upcoming monetary policy meeting next week.
The dollar’s recovery from a recent slide limited gold’s gains. The dollar index rose to 91.04 and was last seen at 90.97, up 0.16% from the previous close.
Gold futures for February ended up by $6.20 or about 0.3% at $1,843.60 an ounce. Gold futures gained 0.2% for the week.
Silver futures for March ended flat at $24.092 an ounce, while Copper futures for March settled at $3.5280 per pound, down $0.0480 or about 1.3% from the previous close.
After months-long talks and with just three weeks to go until the end of the transition period, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said there is now a “strong possibility” the U.K. will leave the EU without a deal.
In U.S. stimulus news, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi cited progress over a new Covid-19 relief package, although Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s staff were skeptical compromises could be made.
Pelosi suggested that the negotiations could stretch on after Christmas if necessary.
Coronavirus cases continue to surge in the U.S. and several countries across Europe. Germany is reportedly looking at imposing fresh lockdown measures to curb the spread of infections.
In economic news, U.S. producer prices edged slightly higher in the month of November, according to a report released by the Labor Department. The report said the producer price index for final demand inched up by 0.1% in November after climbing by 0.3% in October. Economists had expected producer prices to rise by 0.2%.
Excluding food and energy prices, core producer prices still crept up by 0.1% in November, matching the uptick seen in October. Core prices were also expected to increase by 0.2%.
According to a preliminary report from the University of Michigan, U.S. consumer sentiment has unexpectedly improved in the month of December. The report said the consumer sentiment index climbed to 81.4 in December from 76.9 in November. The increase surprised economists, who had expected the index to edge down to 76.5.
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