Gold prices hold steady as U.S. dollar mildly weakens

April Insight- Economic data and market events to watch in the coming month

April Insight- Economic data and market events to watch in the coming month

Gold prices held steady on Monday, as the US dollar mildly weakened after broadly strengthening thanks to Friday's upbeat USA nonfarm payrolls report.

Asian stocks stalled on Tuesday, halting an earlier rally after Wall Street shares lost steam, while the dollar sagged on the back of declining USA yields.

Joe Manimbo, senior market analyst at Western Union Business Solutions in Washington said: "Mixed messages on America's labor market last week largely offset and, importantly, failed to move the dial in favour of faster rate hikes from the Fed".

Gold and the dollar typically move in opposite directions.

However, the report also showed that average hourly earnings rose by just 0.1% in February for an annual rate of 2.6%, down from 2.8% in January. That lowered the year-on-year increase in average hourly earnings to 2.6 percent from 2.8 percent in January.

The dollar also regained some ground after the White House said late last week that key US trading partners Canada and Mexico would be exempt from its highly criticized tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

Shaun Osborne, chief currency strategist at Scotiabank in Toronto said: "We remain cautious on the outlook for the USA dollar and reiterate that tariff action - even on a limited scale - has not reflected positively on the dollar overall in the past".

In late trading, the dollar fell 0.4 percent against the yen to 106.37 yen, and was down 0.5 percent at 0.9470 franc versus the Swiss currency.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his close ally, Finance Minister Taro Aso, faced growing pressure on Monday over a suspected cover-up of a cronyism scandal that has dogged the premier for more than a year.

After a strong start to 2018, the euro remains below the three-year peak hit in February of $1.2556.

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