Gold prices settled lower for the ninth session in a row on Friday, after strong U.S. employment data reinforced expectations of a Federal Reserve interest rate hike next week. For the week, prices of the yellow metal lost around 2%, the second consecutive weekly decline.

The U.S. economy added 235,000 jobs in February from the prior month, as the construction sector recorded its largest gain in nearly 10 years due to unseasonably warm weather, the Labor Department said Friday.

The unemployment rate ticked down to 4.7% from 4.8% in January, even as more people rushed into the labor market.

But average hourly earnings rose just 0.2% in February from a year earlier, below expectations for a 0.3% rise. The small gain lifted the year-on-year increase in earnings to 2.8%, disappointing some investors.

Meanwhile, platinum inched up less than 0.1% to finish at $938.20 an ounce. For the week, it fell around 5.7%.

Palladium dipped 0.4% to $745.15 an ounce, taking its losses for the week to about 3%.

Ahead of the coming week, Investing.com has compiled a list of these and other significant events likely to affect the markets.

 

Tuesday, March 14

China is to publish figures on industrial production and fixed asset investment.

The ZEW Institute is to report on German economic sentiment.

The U.S. is to produce data on producer price inflation.

 

Wednesday, March 15

The U.S. is to release reports on consumer price inflation, retail sales and manufacturing activity in the New York region.

Later in the day, the Federal Reserve is to announce its latest monetary policy decision and Fed Chair Janet Yellen is to hold a press conference to discuss its updated economic projections.

 

Thursday, March 16

The Bank of Japan is to announce its benchmark interest rate and publish a policy statement outlining economic conditions and the factors affecting the policy decision. The announcement is to be followed by a press conference.

The Swiss National Bank is to announce its Libor rate decision and publish its monetary policy assessment.

The Bank of England is to announce its latest interest rate decision and publish the minutes of its policy meeting.

The U.S. is to release a series of economic reports, including data on building permits and housing starts, jobless claims and manufacturing activity in the Philadelphia region.

 

Friday, March 17

Finance ministers and central bank heads from the world’s 20 developed and developing economies will meet in the German town of Baden Baden to discuss the global economy.

The U.S. is to round up the week with a report on industrial production and a preliminary reading of consumer sentiment from the University of Michigan.

Source: UK Investing

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