CHICAGO, Sept. 23 (Xinhua) -- Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange fell Monday as Citigroup and Morgan Stanley remain pessimistic about the future of the precious metal.
The most active gold contract for December delivery dropped 5.5 dollars, or 0.41 percent, to settle at 1,327 dollars per ounce.
Citigroup said in a fresh research report Monday that the support offered by the Federal Reserve's decision to maintain its stimulus policy to gold will be temporary and the downward direction of gold has not changed. It predicts gold prices will be below 1,250 dollars an ounce in 2014.
Morgan Stanley aired similar views Monday and forecast gold prices at 1,200 to 1,350 dollars an ounce in 2014 before heading lower. Goldman Sachs even predicted last Friday that gold prices will dip below 1,000 dollars in 2014.
Fall in gold holdings by SPDR Gold Trust from 912.00 metric tons to 910.19 metric tons Friday also weighed on gold prices.
Nevertheless, gold gained some support Monday from HSBC's preliminary reading of China's manufacturing activity, which jumped to a six-month high of 51.2 in September. China is one of the world's largest consumers of gold.
Although U.S. monetary policy makers made an unexpected decision to maintain the stimulus policy last Wednesday, many market analysts hold that it is still likely for the U.S. to reduce its bond purchase in October or before the end of this year.
Investors are looking forward to the reading of the U.S. gross domestic product due to be released later this week for further clues.
Silver for December delivery lost 7 cents, or 0.32 percent, to close at 21.857 dollars per ounce. Platinum for October delivery dipped 6.7 dollars, or 0.47 percent, to close at 1,425.9 dollars per ounce.