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Gold price seeing some selling pressure as JOLTS reports 11 million job openings in January

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(Kitco News) - The gold market is seeing some selling pressure as healthy momentum in the U.S. labor market, with the number of jobs available rising significantly higher in January, weighs on the precious metal.

Job openings, a measure of labor demand, jumped to 11.01 million on the last business day of January, the Labor Department said in its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS report, on Wednesday. Last month there were 10.46 million job openings.

The data beat expectations as economists were looking for job openings to drop to 10.28 million.

The gold market, unable to break resistance at $1,950 an ounce, is seeing some technical selling pressure, with bearish momentum picking up following the latest labor market data. April gold futures last traded at $1,940.70 an ounce, down 0.24% on the day.

According to some analysts, the market continues to see mixed labor market data, which doesn't bode well for investors expecting to see the Federal Reserve end its tightening cycle within the first half of the year.

The Federal Reserve has said that it was to see clear signs of cooling in the labor market before it stops raising interest rates.

"Job openings may be re-accelerating as the companies waiting on the sidelines may now have more confidence about order books? In any case, this will give the Fed something to think about," said Adam Button, head of currency strategy at

Katherine Judge, senior economist at CIBC, said that with the last JOLTs report, investors should expect Wednesday's monetary policy decision to be its last hike of the tightening cycle.

"These readings are counter to the loosening in labor market conditions that the Fed wants to see and leaves policymakers on track for two further 25bp rate increases ahead.

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