Gold held near its highest in four weeks on Monday after rising almost 1 percent in the previous session, buoyed as geopolitical tensions boosted its safe-haven appeal.
Spot gold was flat at $1,266.40 per ounce at 0044 GMT. On Friday, it climbed 0.9 percent to touch its strongest since May 1 at $1,269.50. US gold futures slipped 0.1 percent to $1,266.4 an ounce. North Korea fired what appeared to be a short-range ballistic missile on Monday that landed in the sea off its east coast, South Korea’s military said, the latest in a series of missile tests defying world pressure and threats of more sanctions.
US President Donald Trump attacked the news media and dismissed leaks from the White House as “fake news” on Sunday, following reports his son-in-law tried to set up a secret channel of communications with Moscow before Trump took office. British Prime Minister Theresa May’s lead over the opposition Labour Party has narrowed sharply, according to opinion polls published since the Manchester attack, suggesting she might not win the landslide predicted just a month ago.
The U.S. economy slowed less than initially thought in the first quarter, but softening business investment and moderate consumer spending are clouding expectations of a sharp acceleration in the second quarter. Heavy rains and a cyclone led to an 8 percent, or 6-tonne drop in Australian gold production in the first quarter, a survey released on Sunday showed.
Hedge funds and other money managers increased their net long position in COMEX gold for the first time in four weeks, in the week ended May 23, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) data showed on Friday. Gold demand in Asia tapered off this week as buyers took to the sidelines in India to await a new national tax policy and as China entered a seasonal slowdown.
The state-backed Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and China’s Fosun International Ltd could announce an investment in Russia’s top gold producer Polyus in early June, a source familiar with the talks told Reuters. No major data scheduled for Monday, May 29.
Chinese markets shut on May 29-30 for Dragon Boat Festival. Many traders will also be away from their desks for public holidays in the United States and Britain on Monday, with U.S. gold futures closing early.