MARKET NEWS



Gold Slips From 4-Month High as Dollar Recovers on New China Bond-Buying News

Gold prices inched lower in early dealings on Thursday, as the dollar recovered against major rivals after China's regulator called a report about Beijing slowing or halting of its U.S. bond buying possibly wrong.

Comex gold futures were at $1,316.70 a troy ounce by 3:05AM ET (0805GMT), down $2.70, or about 0.2%, from the last session's closing price.

Gold prices settled higher for the first time in three sessions Wednesday, after hitting their strongest level since Sept. 15 at $1,328.60 as the dollar slumped after a report that Chinese officials had recommended slowing or halting purchases of U.S. Treasury securities.

The country's foreign exchange regulator said on Thursday the report may be based on erroneous information and could be "fake", prompting investors to buy back dollars and bonds, reducing the appeal of the yellow metal.

Against a basket of six major currencies, the dollar inched up 0.2% to 92.28, having fallen as low as 91.66 on Wednesday, while the yield on the U.S. 10-year bond pulled back from Wednesday's ten-month high of 2.597%.

Looking ahead, Thursday's calendar features top-tier U.S. data on inflation. The Commerce Department will publish producer price inflation figures for December at 8:30AM ET (1330GMT).

In other metals trading, silver futures were little changed at $17.02 a troy ounce.

Palladium prices tacked on 0.4%, to $1,081.45 an ounce. It rose to an all-time high of $1,098.35 at the start of the week thanks to soaring demand for the auto industry.

Sister metal platinum meanwhile dipped 0.1% to $978.30 an ounce.

March copper rose 0.4% to $3.248 a pound.