CHICAGO, Jan. 30 (Xinhua) -- Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange fell on a stronger dollar Thursday.
The most active gold contract for April delivery fell 19.7 U.S. dollars, or 1.56 percent, to settle at 1,242.5 dollars per ounce.
Dollar rallied after HSBC put the final reading of HSBC China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index at 49.5 in January from 50.5 in December. As a reading below 50 indicates contraction, investors are worried that factory output contraction in China may lead to dwindling of the country's demand for gold. China is one of the biggest gold buyers in the world.
Economic figures released Thursday were also negative to gold. U.S. Commerce Department said Thursday that U.S. gross domestic products grew 3.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, giving a boost to U.S. stock market.
Though the U.S. initial jobless claims in the week ended Jan. 25 jumped by 19,000 to a seasonally adjusted 348,000, it may be just a holiday-related distortion and posed little impact on gold.
Market analysts also cited the Federal Reserve's reduction of stimulus policies Wednesday as a factor weighing on the gold market.
Silver for March delivery lost 42.6 cents, or 2.18 percent, to close at 19.126 dollars per ounce. Platinum for April delivery shed 25.8 dollars, or 1.83 percent, to close at 1,382.3 dollars per ounce.