Gold slipped early on Friday after hitting a seven-week high in the previous session as the dollar edged up, but the yellow metal was on track to end higher for a third straight week. Spot gold eased 0.1 percent to $1,193.38 per ounce by 0041 GMT. Bullion on Thursday touched a high of $1,206.98, its best since Nov. 23.
U.S. gold futures fell 0.5 percent to $1,194 per ounce. The dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of currencies, rose 0.2 percent to 101.530. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen did not comment on the outlook for the U.S. economy or monetary policy in remarks to teachers, saying improving U.S. education could help raise living standards. Several Fed officials on Thursday cautioned that the fiscal and tax plans sketched out by the incoming Trump administration could spur a short-term economic boost that would result in longer-run inflation and debt problems.
In an array of appearances Fed regional bank presidents agreed in principle that the policies likely to be pursued by President-elect Donald Trump will raise economic growth – through direct spending, the consumption and investment spurred by tax cuts, and the boost to business from lighter regulation.
The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose less than expected last week, pointing to a tightening labor market that is starting to spur faster wage growth. Industries across the euro zone cranked up output in November and Germany ended the year with its strongest growth in five years, data showed on Thursday, pointing to an economic spurt that may be arriving earlier than some ECB policymakers expect.
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South African bullion producer Harmony Gold said on Thursday that 1,700 miners were staging a wildcat sit-in at its Kusasalethu mine west of Johannesburg, an operation that has been a flashpoint of labour unrest and violence in the past.
Goldcorp Inc agreed to sell its Los Filos mine in Mexico to Leagold Mining Corp in a deal valued at $438 million on Thursday, as the world’s No. 3 gold miner by market value focuses more squarely on core assets.Mali produced 50.9 tonnes of gold in 2016, up from 50.5 tonnes produced in 2015, the mines ministry said on Thursday.