Gold Down as U.S. Treasury Yields Climb By

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By Gina Lee – Gold was down on Friday morning in Asia, feeling the pressure from climbing U.S. Treasury yields. However, the move upwards to a two-week high during the previous session sets the yellow metal on track for a small weekly gain.

inched down 0.04% at $1,731.85 by 12:39 AM ET (4:39 AM GMT). The , which usually moves inversely to gold, inched down on Friday.

U.S. 10-year Treasury note yields rose above 1.75% for the first time in 14 months on Thursday, with the U.S. Federal Reserve pledging to look past inflation and keep interest rates near 0% until at least the end of 2023 when it handed down its on Wednesday.

On the data side, the number of Americans claiming unemployment during the past week unexpectedly rose to 770,000. Forecasts prepared by had predicted 700,000 claims, while 7235,000 claims were reported in the previous week. However, progress on the U.S.’ COVID-19 vaccine rollout could see the country’s labor market is regaining its footing as businesses start to reopen.

The kept its interest rate at 0.10% as it handed down its policy decision earlier in the day.

In Europe, the also kept its rate unchanged at 0.10% when it handed down its decision on Thursday. The central bank said that although the U.K.’s economic recovery from COVID-19 was gathering pace, officials were divided over the prospects for the longer-term recovery. The comments also put paid to expectations for a reversal of stimulus measures.

The European Central Bank may need some time before the recently agreed acceleration in the pace of money printing, its President Christine Lagarde said on the same day.

On the supply side, Switzerland in February sent gold to mainland China for the first time since September 2020, with shipments to India and Thailand also at multi-year highs.

In other precious metals, palladium was little changed at $2,682.68 after climbing over 7.3% to its highest since Feb. 28, 2020, on Thursday. Russia’s Nornickel, the biggest producer of the metal, cut output estimates and sparked supply concerns. Silver fell 0.6% and platinum was down 0.7%.

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