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Gold jumps as U.S. economy disappoints with 145,000 rise in nonfarm payrolls

Kitco News

Jobs US December

(Kitco News) Gold prices rose following weaker-than-expected U.S. employment data from December.

U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose by 145,000 in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The monthly figure came below market consensus projecting 164,000 new positions.

The U.S. unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.5%, a 50-year low, and the number of unemployed was also unchanged at 5.8 million.

Meanwhile, wages, which is another key element in the report, also disappointed. Average hourly earnings rose only 2.9% versus the expected 3.1%.

The biggest jobs gains were in retail trade and healthcare, while the mining sector saw job losses.

Gold prices jumped after the data was released, recovering all daily losses. February Comex gold futures were last trading at $1,555.20, up 0.06% on the day.

Overall, the U.S. job growth ended the year on a softer note, said CIBC Capital Markets economist Katherine Judge.

“The disappointments shouldn't materially change tracking for Q4 GDP which we have at just below 2%, however, could add a slight bid to U.S. fixed income markets today,” Judge wrote on Friday.

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