Metals Stocks: Gold trims loss as investors gauge U.S.-China trade prospects

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Gold futures trimmed a decline after a news report questioned China’s optimism over prospects for a so-called phase one trade deal with the U.S.

Gold for December delivery GCZ19, -0.26%  on Comex were off $3, or 0.2%, at $1,465.50 an ounce after trading as low as $1.456.60 an ounce in earlier trade. December silver SIZ19, -0.52% fell 8.3 cents, or 0.5%, to $16.865 an ounce.

Upbeat expectations around U.S.-China talks dented gold’s haven appeal Friday as U.S. stock indexes scored another round of record closes. Gold was under renewed pressure in early activity after Chinese state media outlent Xinhua described a weekend phone call between Vice Premier Liu He, the country’s top trade negotiator, and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin as “constructive.”

But stock-index futures subsequently lost ground, with gold finding support, after CNBC reported that Chinese officials remained troubled by comments by President Donald Trump indicating there would be no rollback of existing tariffs as part of an agreement.

Bearish analysts said gold still appears vulnerable amid a generally upbeat undertone around trade.

“With Brexit and the trade war about to deliver potentially two big risk-on scenarios, gold selling could get ugly if we see a breach of last week’s low,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda, in a note. “Since the end of the summer, gold was ready for a pullback, not the beginning of a bearish trend.”

In other metals trade, January platinum PLF20, -0.86%  fell 0.9% to $886.60 an ounce, while December palladium PAZ19, -0.06%  was off 0.1% at $1,681 an ounce.

December copper HGZ19, -0.23%  was down 0.2% at $2.6335 a pound.

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