Stocks turned negative after the Labor Department's February jobs report handily exceeded expectations, reaffirming the building momentum in the economic recovery, but also stoking a rise in Treasury yields and concerns over an economic overheating.
Stocks traded lower on Thursday after another technology-led selloff on Wednesday. A new report on weekly unemployment claims came in better than expected, helping boost sentiment after a disappointing print on private payroll growth came in just a day earlier.
Retail consumers in India continued to buy up physical gold this week as prices retreated to a near one-year low, while lower rates also injected fresh activity in other hubs, especially Singapore. Dealers charged up to $5 an ounce over official domestic prices, inclusive of 12.5% import and 3% sales levies, compared with last week's premium of $4. On Friday, local gold futures fell to 44,217 rupees per 10 grams, a trough since April 7.