Gold prices finished firmly lower Monday, as the dollar strengthened and as investors favored assets perceived as risky, including stocks, over so-called havens. August gold finished off $9.80, or 0.8%, to settle at $1,246.70 an ounce. The precious yellow metal has closed down in seven of the past nine trading sessions and has been pressured down by a trio of factors: The Federal Reserve's efforts to normalize U.S. interest rates, a climb in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 index to records on the day, as well as a rising dollar, as measured by the ICE U.S. Dollar Index . On Monday, that gauge, a measure of the buck's strength against a basket of a half-dozen rivals, was climbing 0.3% higher. All of those factors have combined on Monday to weigh on gold, which is priced in dollars, doesn't offer a yield and tends to underperform when appetite for riskier assets is strong, detracting from demand for so-called haven like gold and U.S. Treasurys .
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