Metals Stocks: Gold futures gain, stop short of $1,200 level

Gold futures advanced Tuesday, building on their gain in the prior session, though analysts predicted trouble for the yellow metal in getting through the $ 1,200 mark.

Gold for June delivery GCM5, +0.73%  rose $ 9.20, or 0.8%, to $ 1,196 an ounce, while July silver  SIN5, +0.85%  added 17 cents, or 1%, to $ 16.61 an ounce.

Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at CMC Markets, said “sideways momentum still prevails” for gold. There is also “round-number resistance in place near $ 1,200,” he said in emailed comments late Monday.

On Monday, gold futures settled with a gain of just over 1%, bouncing off a six-week low set as traders searched for clues on when the Federal Reserve will begin lifting interest rates.

In U.S. economic news on Tuesday, the government said the trade deficit jumped in March, reflecting the settlement of a major West Coast port dispute, but also suggesting first-quarter U.S. GDP could get revised from a meager 0.2% gain to a negative reading. Investors are also awaiting a reading on non-manufacturing sectors from the Institute for Supply Management, with 56.5% expected. That’s due at 10 a.m. Eastern Time.

This week’s main economic report hits Friday, with the release of April jobs figures. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch forecast nonfarm payrolls to increase by 233,000, after a disappointing gain of 126,000 in March. See: Wall Street awaits pivotal jobs report for April.

In other markets, U.S. stock futures ESM5, -0.65%  were trading flat to slightly lower, while the dollar DXY, -0.42%  edged down against its major rivals. A weaker buck can help dollar-denominated commodities like gold, since it makes prices cheaper for holders of other currencies.

July platinum PLN5, +0.27%  rose 90 cents, or 0.1%, to $ 1,151.80 an ounce, while June palladium PAM5, +1.88%  advanced $ 7.50, or 1%, to $ 790.15 an ounce. July copper HGN5, +0.89%  added about a penny, or 0.3%, to $ 2.93 a pound.

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