Home Economy PRECIOUS-Gold slips on firm dollar, but equities dip sets up weekly gain

PRECIOUS-Gold slips on firm dollar, but equities dip sets up weekly gain

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* Dollar firms near highest level of the year

* Volatile October amid energy crunch could support gold- analyst

Oct 1 (Reuters) – Gold eased on Friday as the dollar firmed on bets for interest rate hikes, but bullion still held above the pivotal $1,750 technical support level en route to a small weekly gain as worries about rising inflation and growth hurt risk sentiment.

Spot gold fell 0.3% to $1,751.95 per ounce by 0844 GMT. U.S. gold futures eased 0.2% to $1,752.60.

The dollar held close to its highest level of the year, making gold more expensive in other currencies.

But bullion was still up about 0.1% on the week as a retreat in the dollar on Thursday helped it bounce about 2%.

“Even though it doesn’t feel and look like it, gold has actually had a phenomenally strong week,” considering the strong moves in the dollar and yields, the “normal negative drivers”, Saxo Bank analyst Ole Hansen said.

“Anyone…

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