Gold prices in the UAE dipped by half a dirham per gram at the start of trading on Thursday, following a Dh2 increase the previous day. Dubai Jewellery Group figures show that the 24K gold was selling for Dh288.5 per gram on Thursday morning, down from Dh289 per gram at Wednesday's close. Meanwhile, the prices for 22K, 21K, and 18K gold stood at Dh267.25, Dh258.5, and Dh221.75 per gram, respectively.

Internationally, gold was trading at $2,381.92 per ounce, marking a 0.38% increase. Andreas Thalassinos, a senior market analyst at Neotrades, noted that investors are closely watching for upcoming US inflation data, which could significantly sway market sentiment and introduce volatility into the precious metals market. Thalassinos highlighted recent comments by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, who pointed to improved yet uncertain economic indicators from June and expressed concerns about a potential economic slowdown and cooling job market. These factors are fueling speculation about a possible rate cut in September, which could further boost gold prices if inflation shows continued deceleration.

On the demand front, central banks' continued gold purchases are also supporting prices. Notably, India's central bank added over nine tons of gold in June, while Poland and the Czech Republic increased their reserves by four and two tons, respectively. These purchases offset the pause in gold buying by China's central bank for the second consecutive month. Additionally, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have experienced positive cash inflows for two months running, enhancing gold's status as a safe-haven asset during times of uncertainty.