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Gold prices remain under pressure following 33K drop in U.S. weekly jobless claims

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(Kitco News) - The gold market continues to see strong selling pressure but is not reacting to better than expected labor market data as fewer-than-expected American workers apply for first time unemployment benefits.

Thursday the U.S. Labor Department said that weekly jobless claims fell by 33,000 to 779,000, down from the previous week’s significantly downwardly revised estimate of 847,000 claims.

The latest labor market data beat economists’ estimates as consensus forecasts called for initial claims to be round 828,000.

The gold market is seeing little reaction to the latest economic report as is hit with considerable selling pressure. April gold futures last traded at $1,812.50 an ounce, down more than 1% on the day.

The four-week moving average for new claims – often viewed as a more reliable measure of the labor market since it flattens week-to-week volatility – fell to 848,250, a decrease of 1,250 claims from the previous week.

Continuing jobless claims, which represent the number of people already receiving benefits, were at 4.592 million during the week ending Jan. 23, down by 193,000 from the previous week.

U.S. jobless claims data has beat expectations five out of the last six weeks. Although fewer workers are applying for benefits. Economists note that the labor market continues to be devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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