Gold has traded in Asia between $620 and $623 today, as the markets wind down for Christmas and traders await US data later on Thursday.
Data on third quarter economic growth, personal consumption and initial jobless claims could all give clues to the direction of Fed interest rates. That might also give clues to the direction of the US Dollar.
"European Central Bank chief Trichet's nod [yesterday] toward higher interest rates in Europe may weigh more heavily on the Dollar as the next ECB meeting draws near," said James Steel at HSBC in a note yesterday. "This may be supportive of gold, we believe."
The gold price in Hong Kong has risen overnight, according to the Bank of China, up $5 to the equivalent of $622 per ounce. In India, the price of gold for February '07 delivery rose to $634 per ounce on Mumbai's Multi Commodity Exchange. And bullion for delivery in December 2007 held steady in Tokyo at $627 an ounce.
"There's some very light physical buying around, a bit of bargain hunting as prices are quite stable," said Peter Tse, chief precious-metals trader at ScotiaMocatta, the bullion arm of Bank of Nova Scotia, in Hong Kong.
"With fund managers looking to balance their accounts [and] do some window dressing before the end of the year," added a dealer in Sydney, "there is the potential for a few wobbles in things like the US Dollar and the oil price."
"That should be reflected in the gold price as well," he said.
But whether gold rises today against the Dollar or not, the long-term outlook remains strong for gold investors. Find out why – click here to keep reading...