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PRECIOUS-Gold jumps as U.S. jobs data suggests less-hawkish Fed path

Reuters · 01/06/2023 09:57
PRECIOUS-Gold jumps as U.S. jobs data suggests less-hawkish Fed path

Nonfarm payrolls increased 223,000 in Dec. vs. 200,000 expected

Gold prices up about 1.1% so far this week

Recasts, adds comments, updates prices

By Seher Dareen

- Gold prices shot up 1% on Friday as Treasury yields fell after -farm U.S. payrolls data cemented expectations of a less-hawkish Fed, setting the metal on track for its third straight weekly rise.

Spot gold XAU= rose 0.6% to $1,844.60 per ounce by 9.41 a.m. ET (1441 GMT), rising earlier to 1,852.7. Prices have gained about 1.1% so far this week, trading between $1,824.17 - $1,865, having slipped 1.1% on Thursday.

U.S. gold futures GCv1 were up 0.1% at $1,842.30.

"I think we're just seeing a little bit of a relief rally because if we would have had a stronger report today, all bets are off on any Fed pivot anytime soon," said Jim Wyckoff, senior analyst at Kitco Metals.

The payrolls rose by 223,000 jobs in December, data from the Labour Department showed, while a 0.3% rise in average earnings was smaller than expected and also lower than the previous month.

Boosting gold, the dollar index .DXY steadied, while benchmark Treasury yields were close to their session lows. USD/US/

Fed funds futures traders increased bets the Fed will hike rates by 25 basis points at its Feb. 1 meeting to 67% from 54% before the data. FEDWATCH

Higher interest rates dim bullion's appeal as an inflation hedge and raise the opportunity cost of holding the -yielding asset.

From a technical perspective, gold has support at around $1,800, Wyckoff added, highlighting that the gold market was "looking very solid," and could continue to trade sideways to higher in the first quarter, having seen interest on the long side from hedge funds at the start of the New Year.

Spot silver XAG= rose 1.4% to $23.54 per ounce, platinum XPT= gained 1.3% to $1,072.38 while palladium XPD= jumped 1.2% to $1,765.38, all set for weekly falls.

(Reporting by Seher Dareen in Bengaluru; Editing by Nick Macfie)

((Seher.Dareen@thomsonreuters.com; If within U.S. +1 646 223 8780;))