Gold holds steady as dollar remains subdued

Gold prices were steady early on Thursday, holding onto gains from the previous session when they hit a 3-1/2 week high, as the dollar stayed on the back foot.

Spot gold was little changed at $1,287.80 an ounce at 0051 GMT, having hit its highest since December 1 at $1,289 in the previous session. U.S. gold futures were steady at $1,291.20 an ounce.

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was nearly flat at 92.990.

The dollar fell 0.1 percent against the yen at 113.20.

The U.S. dollar fell to a 3-1/2 week low against a basket of currencies on Wednesday as traders bet more major central banks will begin reducing monetary stimulus in 2018 because of faster global economic growth.

Asian shares rose to a one-month high on Thursday and were on track for their best annual performance since 2009, while commodity-driven currencies were buoyed by a rally in copper, which hit a four-year peak.

The United States and Russia have agreed to continue diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis over North Korea’s development of nuclear missiles capable of hitting the United States and emphasised that neither accept Pyongyang as a nuclear power, the U.S. State Department said on Wednesday.

Contracts to buy previously owned homes edged higher in November, boosted by job growth across a strengthening economy.

Earnings at China’s industrial firms grew at their slowest pace in seven months in November, as demand and producer price gains eased in further confirmation of ebbing growth in the world’s second-largest economy. Source: Reuters