January 19, 2016
Gold Holds Up as Stocks Struggle, Platinum Near 7-Year Low
(Reuters) - Gold steadied on Tuesday as equities were pressured by data showing China's economy grew at its slowest clip since 2009 in the fourth quarter, pushing investors towards safe-haven assets.
The world's No. 2 economy grew 6.8 percent in the fourth quarter, data showed. For all of 2015, growth came in at 6.9 percent, the weakest in 25 years.
The numbers matched economist estimates in a Reuters poll, underlining the challenges Beijing faces in stabilising activity while reforming its economy.
Asian stocks were largely flat and oil prices remained under pressure, staying near multi-year lows. The dollar was firmer versus a basket of currencies, keeping gold in check.
A longer-term trend for a stronger U.S. dollar will pressure gold, said Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets in Sydney, who sees resistance for the metal at $1,098.
Spot gold was little changed at $1,089.56 an ounce by 0330 GMT, after a lethargic session on Monday with U.S. markets shut for the Martin Luther King holiday.
Bullion scaled a two-month high of $1,112 on Jan. 8 amid concerns over the fate of the global economy, particularly China.
U.S. gold for February delivery was also flat at $1,089.70 an ounce.
Weak physical demand from top gold consumers China and India has limited gold's upside potential, analysts say, with Chinese consumer spending dented by its slowing economy.
"It seems unlikely that any particular group would put a floor under the gold price at this stage," said McCarthy.
Amid concerns over global growth, spot platinum hit a session-low of $814.50 an ounce, just off Monday's trough of $812.95, its lowest since December 2008.
Palladium was steady at $490.90 an ounce and silver was also flat at $13.94.