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Gold Edges Down Amid Mixed Dollar

The price of gold was ticking lower Monday morning as the U.S. dollar was mixed ahead of this week's economic data, including non-farm payroll report.

Gold for June delivery, the most actively traded contract, eased $5.70 to $1,666.20 an ounce. Last week, gold edged up marginally as the dollar dropped with some positive data on consumer spending in the U.S. and euro zone finance ministers agreeing to increase the lending capacity of its firewall. The euro also made gains after Spain revealed its budget plans with massive spending cuts to steady the faltering economy.

Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, were unchanged at 1,286.62 tons.

This morning, the U.S. dollar was trading flat versus the euro and ticking lower against sterling. The buck was mixed versus the Swiss franc and the yen.

In economic news, euro zone manufacturing downturn worsened as initially estimated in March, final data from Markit Economics showed. The Purchasing Managers' Index fell to 47.7 in March, a three month low, from 49 in the previous month. The final reading matched flash estimate.

Meanwhile, unemployment rate in the euro zone rose to a new record high in February, data from Eurostat showed. The seasonally adjusted jobless rate rose to 10.8 percent from 10.7 percent in January. The outcome was in line with economists' forecast. The rate was 10 percent in February 2011.

A separate report from the Markit Economics showed that German manufacturing sector contraction in March was less severe than estimated earlier. The seasonally adjusted Markit/BME purchasing managers' index fell to 48.4 in March from 50.2 in February.

Elsewhere, the prices of silver and platinum were flat in morning deals.

From the U.S., the Institute for Supply Management will release the results of the manufacturing survey at 10 a.m. ET. Economists expect the index to show a reading of 53 for March after it declined by 1.7 points to 52.4 in February.

Simultaneously, the U.S. Commerce Department will come out with its report on construction spending. Economists expect a 0.7 percent increase in February, reversing the 0.1 percent drop in the previous month.

by RTT Staff Writer

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