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PRECIOUS-Gold falls as investors cash out, but heads for weekly rise

Published 24/04/2020, 16:29
© Reuters.
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(Updates prices)
* Gold in euros hits all-time high
* Palladium eyes biggest weekly fall in a month
* Interactive graphic tracking the global spread: open https://tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7
in an external browser

By Brijesh Patel
April 24 (Reuters) - Gold prices slipped on Friday as
investors booked profits, but concerns over the global economic
slowdown and massive stimulus measures from major central banks
kept bullion on track for a weekly gain.
Spot gold XAU= was down 0.4% at $1,724.29 per ounce by
2:05 pm EDT (1805 GMT), having earlier dropped more than 1%.
U.S. gold futures GCcv1 settled down 0.6% at $1,735.60 an
ounce.
For the week, bullion has risen more than 2% so far, after
hitting its highest in more than a week on Thursday.
"We are seeing short-term profit taking here in gold," said
Tai Wong, head of base and precious metals derivatives trading
at BMO.
"However, gold is holding well near highs of the move as
both retail and institutional investors have been consistently
buying as global balance sheets have ballooned and the outlook
for the global economy remains extremely uncertain."
The outbreak of the new coronavirus, which has infected more
than 2.7 million people globally, has prompted nations to extend
lockdowns to curtail its spread, while central banks have
unleashed a wave of measures to limit the financial toll.
On Thursday, the U.S. House of Representatives
overwhelmingly approved a $484 billion coronavirus relief bill,
while European Union leaders approved an immediate rescue
package of about 500 billion euros. Gold, a safe investment during times of political and
financial uncertainty, tends to benefit from widespread stimulus
measures from central banks because it is widely viewed as a
hedge against inflation and currency debasement.
Indicative of sentiment, holdings of the world's largest
gold-backed exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Trust GLD , rose to
a near seven-year high, while gold in euros XAUEUR=R hit an
all-time peak of 1,612.39 euros per ounce. XAUEUR=R GOL/ETF
"Gold continues to benefit from this big mix of stimulus
that was seen from all over the world. Also the expectations are
pretty high that we are not near the end of the stimulus
(driven) trade and it is only going to intensify in coming
months," said Edward Moya, a senior market analyst at broker
OANDA.
"The one thing that could derail gold's rally is going to be
a vaccine breakthrough for Covid-19." Among other precious metals, palladium XPD= jumped 2.2% to
$2,023.79 an ounce, but was on track to post its worst week in a
month.
Platinum XPT= rose 0.8% to $760.96 per ounce, but still
set for its first weekly fall in three.
Silver XAG= fell 0.7% to $15.20 an ounce.

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