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Gold prices were steady in early Asian trade on Friday, after rising about 1.5 percent in the previous session, while the dollar inched up ahead of the U.S. payrolls data due later in the day. According to a Reuters survey of economists, nonfarm payrolls probably rebounded by 190,000 jobs in October after Florence depressed restaurant and retail payrolls in September. U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping both expressed optimism on Thursday about resolving their bitter trade disputes ahead of a high-stakes meeting planned for the two leaders at the end of November in Argentina. Trump increased economic pressure on Venezuela’s leftist President Nicolas Maduro on Thursday with new sanctions aimed at disrupting the South American country’s gold exports.


LME copper closed near day-highs of $6,143/mt overnight as the US dollar index came off from multi-month highs on weak-than-expected economic data and a rebound in the pound. SHFE copper also closed near session-highs overnight, which returned it to the 60-day moving average. In the physical market, cash flow issues prompted sellers to offload cargoes while spot premiums rose from previous declines in prices of futures. Trades improved as traders purchased on demand. LME copper is likely to trade at $6,040-6,130/mt with SHFE copper at 49,880-49,400 yuan/mt. Spot premiums are seen up to 50 yuan/mt. London Nickel was the best performer among LME and SHFE base metals overnight. LME nickel is likely to hover around $11,700/mt today with the SHFE 1901 contract at 96,500-98,500 yuan/mt. Spot prices are seen at 97,500-106,000 yuan/mt.


Oil prices fell on Friday as surging output by the world’s three largest producers outweighed supply concerns from the start of U.S. sanctions next week against Iran’s petroleum exports. Crude oil prices took a severe hit as investors were unnerved on rising global inventories and record high output in 2018,” said Benjamin Lu of brokerage Phillip Futures. Brent has fallen by over 12 percent since the beginning of October, while WTI has lost more than 13 percent in value. The downward pressure on oil is also visible in the physical market, where top exporter Saudi Arabia is expected to cut crude prices for December cargoes amid higher supply and a glut in refined products that has eroded refinery profits. Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) boosted oil production in October to 33.31 million barrels per day (bpd), a Reuters survey found this week.

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