An employee shows gold bullions at Degussa shop in Singapore June 16, 2017. Picture: REUTERS / EDGAR SU
An employee shows gold bullions at Degussa shop in Singapore June 16, 2017. Picture: REUTERS / EDGAR SU

Bengaluru — Gold fell 1% on Friday, weighed down by gains in the equity markets and the dollar, but fears of a global recession and lack of clarity on the US-China trade war kept bullion on track for a third straight weekly gain.

Spot gold was down 0.6% at $1,513.66 an ounce as of 12.31pm GMT, but is up 1% so far this week. US gold futures fell 0.4% to $1,524.30.

“Positive risk-on sentiment has tried to make a return ... There is some demand for the dollar and some confidence over the health of the US economy, especially after yesterday’s impressive retail sales figure. All this is weakening demand for gold today,” said FXTM analyst Lukman Otunuga.

World stocks rose as China hinted at more support for its economy, amid growing expectations of aggressive stimulus from all the major central banks.

Also weighing on gold was gains in the dollar after data showing US retail sales surged in July helped assuage some fears of a recession. However, key macro-fundamentals supporting the appetite for gold remain firmly intact, with lower interest rates across the globe and many central banks jumping aboard the global policy easing bandwagon, Otunuga added.

Bullion has risen more than $100 since the beginning of August amid the heightened trade tensions and a slew of disappointing economic data globally.

Earlier this week, 10-year US treasury yields dropped below the two-year yield for the first time in 12 years. Curve inversion is widely considered a warning that the economy is headed for recession.

On the trade front, US President Donald Trump said on Thursday that he believed China wanted to make a trade deal and that the dispute would be fairly short. This comes after Beijing vowed to counter the latest tariffs on Chinese goods but called on Washington to meet it halfway on a potential deal.

“There are major fundamental questions to be resolved between the two sides and that is making people hesitant of reaching a conclusion [on the talks],” Capital Economics analyst Ross Strachan said.

Investors will now focus on the US Federal Reserve’s annual symposium next week for further hints on monetary easing. Traders see about a one-in-three chance of a 50-basis-point rate cut by the Fed this September.

On the technical side, spot gold may fall into a range of $1,483-$1,503 an ounce, according to Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

In other metals, silver fell 0.4% to $17.19 an ounce, but was on track for a second consecutive weekly gain. Platinum fell 0.4% to $835.56 an ounce, while palladium was steady at $1,444.95 an ounce.