By Joe Deaux
Gold futures headed for the biggest gain in a month after U.S. employment data missed estimates, boosting the metal’s appeal as a haven.
Payrolls climbed by 151,000 last month following a 275,000 gain in July, a Labor Department report showed Friday in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey called for 180,000.
Bullion for delivery in December gained 1 percent to $1,329.80 an ounce at 8.50 a.m. on the Comex in New York, the most since Aug. 2.
“Traders are bidding up gold because they think the jobs number isn’t strong enough to justify two rate hikes this year,” Phil Streible, a senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago, said by telephone. “Lower interest rates means a weaker dollar and gold moves up on that.”
The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell for a second day after four straight gains.
Gold is up 26 percent this year as uncertainty in U.S. growth pushed the Federal Reserve to consider holding off raising interest rates this year, and as the Brexit left traders considering an economic slowdown in Europe. Higher rates reduce the appeal of gold, which doesn’t pay interest or offer returns like assets such as bonds or equities.
Before the release of the jobs report, the metal was little changed as it headed for a second straight weekly decline. On Thursday, it touched the lowest since June 24, the day prices surged on demand for a haven following the the U.K.’s vote to exit the European Union.