By: Saumya Vaishampayan
September 9, 2013
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Gold futures swung between slight gains and losses Monday as investors considered the U.S. administration’s campaign for a military strike in Syria and prospects for the Federal Reserve’s monthly bond-buying program.
Gold for December delivery /quotes/zigman/662680 GCZ3 +0.12% added $1, or 0.1%, to trade at $1,387.40 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Gold prices rose 1% Friday, helping the yellow metal end the week with just a 0.7% decline.
U.S. dollar inched down against major rivals on Monday.
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President Barack Obama is expected to discuss the Syrian situation in interviews on Monday, ahead of a televised speech Tuesday evening. Secretary of State John Kerry continued to make the case for limited action in Syria on Monday, arguing that military force was needed to force President Bashar al-Assad to the negotiating table to bring about a political solution.
Summer recess for the U.S. Congress has ended, with expectations of a vote in the Senate on the Syrian resolution this week. Congressional voting marks the next “key event” for gold futures until the Federal Reserve’s September meeting, said Andrey Kryuchenkov of VTB Capital in a research note.
“The start of the week is likely to see dull sideways trading for gold, with some attention on developments in Syria,” he wrote.
Gold futures gained Friday after labor-market data showed a slower pace of job creation in the U.S., including a weaker-than-expected headline number for the August jobs report and downward revisions in June and July. The revisions cast some doubt as to whether the Federal Reserve could begin to slow its monthly bond purchases at its September meeting.
“That said, the idea that an exit from “QE3” might begin next week is by no means off the agenda yet in the eyes of market participants, which is likely to make it difficult for gold to rise above the $1,400 per troy ounce mark in any lasting fashion over the next few days,” wrote commodity analysts at Commerzbank.
In other metals action Monday, December silver /quotes/zigman/662683 SIZ3 -0.74% shed 31 cents, or 1.3%, to trade at $23.58 an ounce, after gaining 1.6% last week. December copper /quotes/zigman/678451 HGZ3 +0.48% added 3 cents, or 0.8%, to trade at $3.29 a pound.
October platinum /quotes/zigman/10907220 PLV3 -0.52% lost $2.60, or 0.2%, to $1,493.10 an ounce while December palladium /quotes/zigman/11790992 PAZ3 -1.35% declined $2.85, or 0.4%, to trade at $694.00 an ounce.