May 16 (Bloomberg) -- Gold, on the brink of a bear market, declined for a fourth straight session as concern that Greece will have to leave the euro boosted the dollar and cut the metal’s appeal as an alternative asset.
The U.S. Dollar Index, a measure against six major counterparts, rose for a 13th day to a four-month high after Greece’s political leaders failed to form a ruling coalition.
“The market no longer seems to be seems pricing in whether Greece will leave the Europe Union, rather when it will happen,” Steve Scacalossi, a New York-based vice president at TD Securities Inc., wrote in a report. “The risk-off tone continued.”
Gold futures for June delivery fell 1.3 percent to settle at $1,536.60 at 1:45 p.m. on the Comex in New York. The settlement leaves prices down 19 percent from a record close of $1,891.90 reached on Aug. 22, about 1 percentage point shy of a bear market.
Earlier, bullion slumped to $1,526.70, the lowest since Dec. 29 and 21 percent below the record $1,923.70 it touched on Sept. 6. The metal erased its gains for the year on May 14.
Investor George Soros increased his holdings in the SPDR Gold Trust, the biggest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, in the first quarter, while billionaire John Paulson maintained his stake, filings showed yesterday.
Silver futures for July delivery dropped 3.1 percent to $27.196 an ounce on the Comex, after sliding to $26.73, the lowest since Dec. 29.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, palladium futures for June delivery slipped 1.2 percent to $594.10 an ounce. Platinum futures for July delivery retreated 1 percent to $1,432.20 an ounce.
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