U.S. firms augmented payrolls in January by adding more jobs than the anticipated amount, according to ADP Employer Services.
Gold futures slipped more than 6 percent in January, a stark contrast to the 30 percent they gained last year.
"No one expects gold to return 30 percent like last year," Frank Lesh, a trader at FuturePath Trading LLC in Chicago, told Bloomberg. "The economy is doing better, and it takes away the bid for gold. The funds feel there are better opportunities in other commodities like corn, soybeans and wheat."
Just before 5 p.m., gold futures were down 0.22 percent, a $2.90 slide to $1,337.40 per troy ounce. Silver futures were down 0.51 percent, dipping 0.144 cents to $28.37 per troy ounce, after having dropped nearly 9 percent in the month of January.
July-delivery platinum was down 4.2 percent to $1,830.60 per troy ounce shortly after noon in Chicago while March-delivery palladium dipped 8.6 percent to $814.95 per troy ounce.
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