Gold futures fell from the highest in almost 11 months after the U.S. unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped, easing pressure on the Federal Reserve to expand monetary stimulus. Silver also slid.
The jobless rate in September declined to 7.8 percent from 8.1 percent, government data showed today. Earlier, gold reached a 10-month high close to $1,800 an ounce on speculation that stimulus programs in the U.S., Europe and Japan enhanced the appeal of the metal as an alternative to currencies.
“People are throwing in the towel,” Adam Klopfenstein, a senior market strategist at Archer Financial Services Inc. in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “Investors are now speculating on how long the third round” of qualitative easing will continue in the U.S., he said.
Gold futures for December delivery fell 0.9 percent to settle at $1,780.80 at 1:44 p.m. on the Comex in New York. Prices earlier touched $1,798.10, the highest for a most-active contract since Nov. 9, and gained 0.4 percent this week.
The unemployment rate, derived from a survey of households, was forecast by analysts to rise to 8.2 percent.
Silver futures for December delivery declined 1.5 percent to $34.572 an ounce. Yesterday, the metal closed at the highest since March 1.
Silver has jumped 24 percent this year, while gold advanced 14 percent.
Platinum futures for January delivery retreated 1 percent to $1,707.20 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, ending an eight-session rally.
Palladium futures for December delivery slumped 1.7 percent to $663.20 an ounce on the Nymex.