Apr 3 (Reuters) – Gold prices fell on Friday as the dollar strengthened, but were stuck in a narrow range before the release of the US non-farm payroll report, which could shed more light on the damage caused by the coronavirus to the economy.
* At 0923 GMT, spot gold was down 0.1% at $ 1,610.46 an ounce, accumulating a decline of close to 0.5% so far this week, after the 8% jump in the previous week.
* Gold futures in the United States were down 0.6% at $ 1,627.90 an ounce.
* “The dollar is moderately stronger and that is affecting gold prices,” said Xiao Fu, an analyst at Bank of China International.
* “Gold remains in a tug-of-war situation between the virus and the stock markets (…) It is not clear that there will be an upward trend and rather it is expected to remain within its ranges in the short term “he added.
* The gains made by the dollar as a safe asset limited the advance of gold. The dollar index was headed for a 2% weekly rise amid rising fear of a global recession.
* Attention was now focused on the US Nonfarm Payroll Report, to be released at 1230 GMT. Economists polled by Reuters forecast 100,000 job losses last month, a sharp drop from February’s 273,000 advance.
* In other precious metals, palladium was down 0.9% at $ 2,193.71 an ounce; platinum fell 1.8% to $ 713.72; and silver lost 1.2%, at $ 14.36.
(Edited in Spanish by Carlos Serrano)