Gold Ends Little-changed As Dow Aims At 20,000

By Mark DeCambre Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Gold prices on Wednesday settled near break-even levels even as the dollar retreated from a 14-year high. February gold ended down 40 cents, or less than 0.1%, at $1,333.20 an ounce. A slightly weaker dollar, as measured by the ICE U.S. Dollar Index , a gauge of the buck against six currencies, didn't offer the precious metal a boost. The dollar index was off 0.3% at 103.01 on the day, after yesterday touching its highest levels since 2002. Typically, a weaker dollar makes gold, which is priced in the currency, more attractive to investors using other monetary units. The muted move for gold also comes as the Dow Jones Industrial Average is trying to reach a psychological milestone of 20,000. Higher levels for stocks can undercut appetite for gold, which is viewed as a haven. Gold prices have declined 3.2% so far in December while the Dow is on track to return 4.4% over the same period.

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