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Gold Futures Settle Notably Lower

Gold prices drifted lower on Tuesday, dragging gold futures to their lowest close so far this year, amid growing appetite for riskier assets thanks to decent earnings reports and easing worries about trade.

Encouraging economic data out of China and Europe and the dollar's uptick - the dollar index rose to 97.09, gaining about 0.16%, contributed as well to the yellow metal's decline.

Gold was also probably weighed down by a Bloomberg report that said Venezuela sold $400 million in gold recently to counter the impact of U.S. sanctions on the country.

The Federal Reserve, as well central banks of major countries, have been going soft on rates and this has encouraged investors to go in for riskier assets such as equities.

Gold futures for June ended down $14.10, or 1.1%, at $1,277.20 an ounce.

On Monday, gold futures ended down $3.90, or 0.3%, at $1,291.30 an ounce.

Silver futures for May ended down $0.060, at $14.915 an ounce, while Copper futures for May ended at $2.9305 per pound, down $0.0045 from previous close.

In European economic news today, a survey report from the ZEW-Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research showed German investor confidence rose sharply in April and topped economists' expectations.

The ZEW investor confidence index climbed to 3.1 from -3.6 in March. Economists had forecast a score of 0.8.

The investor confidence index for Eurozone surged to 4.5 from -2.5 in March, the ZEW survey said.

Preliminary data from the Office for National Statistics showed UK employment growth rose more than expected in the three months to February, surging to a record high.

The level of employment in the UK grew by 179,000 persons to a record high of 32.72 million in the three months to February. Economists had forecast a 173,000 increase.

The ILO unemployment rate was 3.9% same as in January, and in line with economists' expectations.

In the U.S., a report from the Federal Reserve showed industrial production unexpectedly edged lower in the month of March, dipping by 0.1%, after inching up by 0.1% in February.

Meanwhile, a separate report from the National Association of Home Builders showed a modest improvement in U.S. homebuilder confidence in the month of April.

The report said the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index inched up to 63 in April after holding at 62 in March, with the uptick matching expectations.

On the trade front, a deal between the U.S. and China seems to be in the making at the negotiating tables after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the two sides were close to the final round of negotiations.

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