Investing.com – Gold prices fell to a four-month low on Friday and posted the largest weekly fall since May after Friday’s stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs report underlined expectations for a rate hike by the Federal Reserve at its upcoming meeting.
for February delivery settled down 0.22% at $1,250.30 on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, after falling as low as $1,244.40 earlier, the lowest level since July 21.
For the week the precious metal was down 2.64%.
The U.S. economy added jobs in November, the reported, surpassing the 200,000 forecast by economists, while the unemployment rate held steady at for a second consecutive month.
Wages rose 0.2% for the month, and 2.5% from a year ago, which was below forecasts of 0.3% and 2.7%, respectively.
The Fed is widely expected to raise interest rates at this week’s monetary policy meeting and is currently seen tightening two to three times next year, but concerns over tepid wage growth could alter the outlook for 2018.
Expectations for higher interest rates are typically negative for gold as the precious metal struggles to compete with yield-bearing assets like Treasury’s when borrowing costs rise.
The , which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was at 93.87 late Friday, off an earlier high of 94.08.
A weaker dollar typically tends to support gold, which is denominated in the U.S. currency and becomes more affordable to foreign buyers when the dollar declines.
Elsewhere in precious metals trading, was at $15.87 a troy ounce late Friday, but ended the week down 2.93%.
was down 0.73% to $888.00 in late trade, after falling as low as $882.30 earlier, the weakest since February 2016. For the week platinum was down 5.65%, its largest weekly decline in 13 months.
was 0.46% lower at $998.33 an ounce and ended the week down 1.71%.
Among base metals, ended Friday up 0.52% at $2.980 a pound.
The industrial metal remained below $3 in the wake of its worst day in almost three years earlier in week, amid fears that a slowdown in China will hit demand. China is the world’s largest base metals consumer.
investors will be focusing on Wednesday Fed meeting where it is expected to hike rates by a quarter point.
The European Central Bank, Bank of England and the Swiss National Bank are also due to hold monetary policy meetings, although no changes are expected.
Ahead of the coming week, Investing.com has compiled a list of these and other significant events likely to affect the markets.
Monday, December 11
The U.S. is to release Jolts job opening data.
Tuesday, December 12
Australia is to release reports on house price inflation and business confidence.
The UK is to release inflation data for November.
The ZEW Institute is to produce data on German economic sentiment.
The U.S. is to release data on producer price inflation.
ECB President Mario Draghi is to speak in Frankfurt.
Wednesday, December 13
Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Philip Lowe is to speak at an event in Sydney.
The U.K. is to release its monthly jobs report.
The U.S. is to report on consumer inflation.
The Fed is to announce its benchmark interest rate and publish a rate statement which outlines economic conditions and the factors affecting the monetary policy decision.
Thursday, December 14
Australia is to publish its latest jobs report.
China is to release data on industrial production and fixed asset investment.
The euro zone is to release data on manufacturing and service sector activity.
Switzerland is to publish figures on producer prices and the SNB is to announce its latest monetary policy decision.
The BoE is also to announce its latest monetary policy decision.
The ECB is to announce its latest monetary policy decision. The announcement is to be followed by a press conference with President Mario Draghi.
Canada is to publish data on new house price inflation. Later in the day, Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz is to speak at an event in Toronto.
The U.S. is to report data on import prices.
Friday, December 15
Japan is to publish data on manufacturing and service sector growth.
BoE Chief Economist Andy Haldane is to speak at an event in Italy.
Canada is to report on manufacturing sales.
The U.S. is to round up the week with data on manufacturing activity in the New York region as well a report on industrial production.