Gold prices were mixed in Asian trading on Friday as investors focused on the implications of the Federal Reserve''s decision this week to trim its USD85 billion in monthly bond purchases by USD10 billion beginning in January.
On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold futures for February delivery traded at USD1,194.10 a troy ounce, up 0.04%, after hitting an overnight session low of USD1,192.60 a troy ounce and high of USD1,226.00 a troy ounce.
Gold futures were likely to find support at USD1,180.35 a troy ounce, the low from June 28, and resistance at USD1,251.40, Monday''s high.
Fed bond purchases, in effect for 15 months now, have supported gold by bolstering its image as a hedge to the dollar''s weakening trend that comes with monetary intervention in the economy.
Meanwhile, less-than-stellar economic indicators in the U.S. watered down the greenback''s gains, though they did little to boost demand for the yellow metal.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia said that its manufacturing index jumped to 7.0 for December from November’s 6.5 reading, though analysts were expecting the index to rise to 10.0 this month.
A separate report showed that U.S. existing home sales declined 4.3% to a seasonally adjusted 4.90 million units in November from 5.12 million in October. Analysts were expecting U.S. existing home sales to fall 1.5% to 5.03 million units last month.
Also on Thursday, the U.S. Department of Labor said the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending Dec. 14 increased by 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 379,000, the highest level since March.
Analysts were expecting U.S. jobless claims to fall to 334,000 last week from the previous week’s revised total of 369,000.
Elsewhere on the Comex, silver for March delivery was up 0.14% at USD19.212 a troy ounce, while copper for March delivery was up 0.03% and trading at USD 3.298 a pound.
On Friday, the U.S. is to round up the week with revised data on third-quarter GDP.
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