Gold dropped for the third time in four sessions as the outlook for low U.S. inflation cut demand for the metal as a store of value.
Gains for consumer prices remain tepid, a government report showed last week. While inflation hasn’t reached the Federal Reserve’s 2 percent goal since April 2012, policy makers in December raised interest rates for the first time in almost a decade as the labor market improved. Higher rates coupled with stable inflation erode investor demand for gold, which doesn’t pay interest or offer dividends. The metal has dropped almost 10 percent this year.
Gold futures for February delivery slid 0.7 percent to settle at $1,068.30 an ounce at 1:45 p.m. on the Comex in New York. Trading was about 50 percent below the 100-day average for this time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Holdings in global exchange-traded funds backed by bullion touched a six-year low of 1,458.19 metric tons on Dec. 17. Assets were at 1,470.29 tons on Dec. 23, the latest data compiled by Bloomberg show.
Silver futures for March delivery dropped 3.4 percent to $13.884 an ounce on the Comex, the biggest loss since Dec. 17. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum futures for April delivery fell 0.2 percent to $882.60 an ounce, while palladium futures for March delivery slumped 1.3 percent to $551.95 an ounce.