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Gold ends lower for 3rd session in row


08:33, May 14, 2013

CHICAGO, May 13 (Xinhua) -- Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange finished lower on Monday, extending their decline to a third session on strength in the U.S. dollar and concerns that the U.S. Federal Reserve may soon scale back its bond-buying program.

The most active gold contract for June delivery fell 2.3 dollars, or 0.16 percent, to settle at 1,434.3 dollars per ounce. Gold futures prices have tallied a loss of 2.7 percent in three sessions. This week, the biggest focus for the gold market will be the dollar, according to market analysts.

In addition, investors considered the possible curtailing of monetary-policy stimulus by the Fed. The central bank's easy monetary policy tends to raise the risk of inflation, as well as putting pressure on the dollar. Gold is seen as a hedge against inflation and as a dollar-denominated commodity, and can benefit from a weaker dollar.

The Fed has reportedly mapped out a plan for winding down its program of buying 85 billion dollars in bonds each month. Officials were trying to clarify the strategy so the markets don't overreact to their next moves, said reports.

The dollar index edged up to 83.253, from Friday's 83.135 level. Meanwhile, declines in holdings in gold-backed exchange-traded funds remained a concern in the market. Gold holdings in the SPDR Gold Trust fell about 11 metric tons to 1,051.65 metric tons as of Friday from a week earlier.

Silver for July delivery rose 3.8 cents, or 0.16 percent, to close at 23.696 dollars per ounce.

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