(Reuters) - Gold extended losses to a three-month low on Friday as positive developments in U.S.-China trade tarnished the metal’s safe-haven appeal, putting it on track for the biggest weekly decline in three years.
Spot gold was down 0.3% at $1,463.20 per ounce as of 1:56 p.m. EST (1856 GMT), poised for a drop of about 3.4%, the biggest weekly loss since November 2016. It fell to $1,455.80, its lowest since Aug. 5, earlier in the session.
“We are seeing a rally in risk markets, dollar surge and equities reaching an all time high. There had been a portion of long positions built up in the last few months and we are starting to see those liquidating,” said Ryan McKay, a commodity strategist at TD Securities.
“(Also,) we have had a lot of optimism on the trade front, a lot of news on potential rollback on tariffs and the China deal, which had been the major headwind for growth throughout the last year.”
Tariffs could be lifted if a U.S.-China trade agreement is reached, a White House spokeswoman said, giving no further details.
The dollar hit a three-week high against key rivals, while global equity markets slid, a day after they surged to a 21-month high.
Uncertainty about the trade talks, however, prevailed as U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday told reporters that he had not agreed to roll back tariffs on China.
“We are trading on a lot of speculation right now and there’s no solid evidence or anything specific,” said Craig Erlam, OANDA senior market analyst.
The trade war was one of the key reasons for bullion, which is considered a safer asset during economic and political uncertainties, rising about 14% so far this year.
Gold also benefited from dovish monetary policies by global central banks, but the Fed’s recent decision to hold back on further cuts until the economy takes a downturn weighed on bullion, analysts said.
Silver dropped 1.2% to $16.90 per ounce, having touched its lowest since Aug. 13, and was set to post its steepest weekly drop since October 2016.
Platinum fell 2% to $890.47 per ounce and was poised for a weekly drop of about 6%, its biggest since November 2015.
Palladium, also an industrial metal, slumped 3.3% to $1,741.65, having touched a two-week low, and was headed for its first weekly decline in five.
Trump’s comments triggered some uncertainties to the trade deal and concerns on global growth and weighed on palladium, said George Gero, managing director at RBC Wealth Management. (Reporting by K. Sathya Narayanan and Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru Editing by Marguerita Choy, Chizu Nomiyama and Richard Chang)
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