Gold futures moved higher on Friday, snapping a six-session losing streak, as investors sought the safe-haven asset following a sharp surge in speculative trading in stocks by retail investors.
Stock prices took a beating as investor sentiment was jolted by a huge increase in speculative trading from retail investors organized over online forums, such as Reddit.
According to data analytics company S3, hedge funds and other large investors that bet against GameStop have lost more than $5 billion after a cohort of amateur investors joined forces to inflate the price of shares in the U.S. video game chain.
The dollar index, which dropped to 90.36 in the European session from a high of 90.78, recovered subsequently and was last seen hovering around 90.55, up 0.11% from previous close.
Gold futures for April ended up $9.10 or about 0.5% at $1,850.30 an ounce. Gold futures shed about 2.4% in January.
Silver futures for March ended higher by $0.992 at $26.914 an ounce, while Copper futures for March settled at $3.5560 per pound, down $0.0220 from previous close.
In U.S. economic news, a report from the Commerce Department showed personal income climbed by 0.6% in December after tumbling by a downwardly revised 1.3% in November. Economists had expected personal income to inch up by 0.1% compared to the 1.1% slump originally reported for the previous month.
The report also said personal spending dipped by 0.2% in December after falling by a downwardly revised 0.7% a month earlier. Economists had expected spending to decrease by 0.4%, matching the drop originally reported for the previous month.
The University of Michigan’s report showed consumer sentiment deteriorated by slightly more than initially estimated in the month of January. The report said the consumer sentiment index for January was downwardly revised to 79.0 from the preliminary reading of 79.2.
Economists had expected the consumer sentiment index to be unrevised from the preliminary reading, which was still down from 80.7 in December.