- Gold prices inched down on Friday, as the U.S. dollar strengthened ahead of the monthly nonfarm payrolls data and trade worries lingered.

Comex gold futures for June delivery were down 0.08% to $1,299.10 a troy ounce as of 4:38 AM ET (8:38 GMT).

The nonfarm payrolls data, often seen as an indicator of the health of the U.S. economy, is expected at 8:30 AM ET (12:30 GMT). Traders will pay close to wage data and any clues that the Federal Reserve could increase interest rates, which could further strengthen the dollar and decrease the price of gold.

The Fed raised rates in March and is expected to raise rates twice more, including at its next meeting in June.

Expectations of higher interest rates tend to boost the dollar by making the currency more attractive to yield-seeking investors.

Higher rates are a negative for gold as the precious metal, which does not pay interest, struggles to compete with yield-bearing assets when rates rise.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was at 94.09, rising 0.15%..

Gold is denominated in the U.S. currency and is sensitive to moves in the dollar. Bullion becomes more expensive for holders of other currencies when the dollar rises.

Investors remained on edge after the U.S. announced it was going ahead with tariffs on imported steel and aluminum from the EU, Canada and Mexico, prompting fears of a full-blown trade war. All three have said they plan to retaliate.

Gold, seen as a safe haven asset, often moves higher from political turmoil.

Elsewhere on the Comex, silver futures were up 0.04% to $16.465 a troy ounce. Among other precious metals, Platinum Futures rose 0.23% to $912.20 while Palladium Futures increased 0.13% to $983.00 an ounce. Copper futures inched up 0.10% to $3.068 a pound.