Gold was flat, trading in a narrow $4 range on Friday, as worries over surging coronavirus cases globally and lingering trade tensions between the US and China overshadowed strong US jobs data. Spot gold was little changed at $1,774.18 per ounce by 0456 GMT (10:26 am in India). US markets are closed on Friday for observing Independence Day on July 4.
US gold futures eased 0.2 per cent to $1,786.50 per ounce.
“Nagging doubts appear to remain in investors’ minds about the explosion of COVID-19 cases in the US sunbelt states and its possible negative effect on the recovery going forward,” said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at OANDA.
The United States reported more than 55,000 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, a new daily global record for the pandemic, while over 10.89 million people have been infected worldwide.
“Geopolitical considerations are also to the fore… with a holiday in the US, and the weekend upon us, some haven-directed buying of gold is definitely evident,” Mr Halley added.
Markets also kept a wary eye on China’s trade relations with the US.
Indicative of sentiment, holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, rose 0.8 per cent to 1,191.47 tonnes on Thursday.
Stemming bullion’s advance, better-than-expected US jobs reports lifted sentiment in wider financial markets.
The US economy created jobs at a record clip in June, but 31.5 million Americans were collecting unemployment checks in the middle of the month.
Palladium fell 0.4 per cent to $1,894.81 per ounce, while platinum rose 0.6 per cent to $807.68, set for its first weekly gain in six.
Silver gained 0.6 per cent to $18, heading for its fourth consecutive weekly gain.