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Gold Prices Sink Lower Following Upbeat U.S. Housing Construction Data

Kitco News

(Kitco News) -Gold remain under pressure, falling to session lows Thursday following data showing that the U.S. housing construction saw an uptick in momentum.

The Commerce Department’s latest report showed that U.S. housing starts rose 5.7% in to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.24 million units in April. The data was slightly better than expected with consensus forecasts called for starts to be around 1.21 million.

Along with the positive headline data, the report noted that March housing starts were revised up to 1.168 million units. However, the housing sector remains down on an annual basis. Housing starts were down. 2.5% compared to April 2018.

Meanwhile, the Commerce Department said the tally of building permits – important as an indicator of future construction activity – rose 0.6% last month to an annualized rate of 1.296 million in line with expectations. Economists were expecting to see an increase to 1.29 million.

For the year, building permits are down 5% compared to April 2018 data.

Gold prices were under modest selling pressure ahead of the data and the market has fallen further in initial reaction. April gold futures last traded at $1,291.6, down 0.49% on the day.

"today's report confirms that the US housing market is on healthier footing, having moved off of the lows seen in recent months," said Katherine Judge, senior economist at CIBC Capital Markets.

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