Gold edges lower ahead of Trump inauguration

LONDON (REUTERS) - Gold prices dipped on Friday as investors expect US President-elect Donald Trump to calm markets with a return to conciliatory language in his inaugural address.

If Mr Trump repeats the reassuring tone taken immediately after the election in November there will be scant need for gold's safe haven attributes, analysts said.

"On the whole, we'd expect an appropriately presidential tone to be struck and that the dollar will gain and that bullion will once again be under pressure along with the rest of the precious metals complex," said Jonathan Butler, commodities analyst at Mitsubishi in London.

"However, if we get any of the campaign trail divisive rhetoric, that's probably going to sink that reflationary trade and boost gold as a safe haven." Mr Trump is due to take the oath of office after the close of European markets.

Spot gold was down 0.4 per cent at US$1,200.11 (S$1713.63) an ounce by 1438 GMT (10.38pm Singapore time), while US gold futures fell 0.1 per cent to US$1,200.

Also weighing on gold was a slightly firmer dollar, which makes the metal more expensive for holders of other currencies.

The US dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of currencies, added 0.1 per cent to 101.25.

Better than expected US jobs, housing and factory data reinforced the view that the US economy is sufficiently robust to warrant interest rate rises.