Global gold prices edge lower, though geopolitical worries offer support

Demands for mini gold bars are surging in South Korea as rumors of imminent North Korea nuclear and missile test this month, and talk of a preemptive or retaliatory strike by the United States have prompted concerns among local investors, driving them to seek investments with less downside risks.

In France, investors remained nervous ahead of the first round of the country's presidential election this Sunday, even though an opinion poll put centrist Emmanuel Macron first, just ahead of far-right, anti-euro candidate Marine Le Pen.

The most active USA gold futures for June delivery settled up 0.3 per cent at $US1,291.90.

Gold pared gains from a five-month high on Monday, losing steam as U.S. Treasury yields turned higher and the dollar came off its lows, after rising geopolitical tensions over North Korea spurred earlier safe-haven buying in bullion.

It also said transactions in gold moved up to an average 31,972 grams traded on a daily basis in the first 14 days of April.

"As (gold) didn't manage to get through $US1,300 and due to light volumes during (holiday-related) European hours, gold consolidated until weaker US economic data gave the yellow metal another push", said Giovanni Staunovo, commodity analyst for UBS Wealth Management.

British Prime Minister Theresa May's call for a snap general election added to a lengthening list of uncertainties for investors already on edge over geopolitical tensions that also include Syria, Afghanistan, Turkey and US relations with Russian Federation and China.

Gold closed at 59,466.67 won ($52.07) per gram on the Korean market Friday, hitting an eight-month high.

"Trump's penchant for a slightly weaker dollar and a gradual rise in rates is indicative of more legs to the recent rally in gold", Sachdeva of Religare Securities said.

Silver futures declined 0.242 dollar or 1.3 percent to close at USD 18.31 per troy ounce at the COMEX. Palladium on Tuesday fell almost 2% to a more than four-week low of US$769.80.

Platinum fell 0.1% to US$972.45, while palladium was down 0.3% at US$772.

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  • Zachary Reyes