Gold and silver prices fell today in Indian markets, tracking weak global cues. On MCX, February gold futures slid 0.4% to 49,125 in their third decline in four days. Silver futures on MCX fell 0.4 % to 63,472 per kg. In the previous session, gold had edged up 0.4% while silver rose 0.1%. In global markets, gold prices eased today as risk sentiment improved as the US prepares to start its Covid-19 vaccination program from today.

Most Asian equity markets were higher while Dow futures also edged higher. Spot gold fell 0.2% to $1,834.94 per ounce.

But losses in the precious metal was capped as gold was supported at lower levels by hopes for more US economic stimulus and a weaker dollar. Gold is seen as a hedge against inflation and currency debasement.

Silver was little changed at $23.90 an ounce, while platinum gained 0.6% to $1,015.03 and palladium rose 0.4% to $2,327.57.

Britain and the European Union have agreed to extend talks on a post-Brexit trade deal past a self-imposed deadline. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and EU chief Ursula von der Leyen said after a crisis call that they would "go the extra mile" to find common ground in long-running talks.

ETF investors remained on sidelines as gold struggled for direction. Holdings in the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund or gold ETF, SPDR's Gold Trust, fell 0.32% to 1,175.99 tonnes on Friday from 1,179.78 tonnes on Thursday.

Meanwhile, gold is heading for the first quarterly loss since 2018 as progress on vaccines and signs of recovery dent demand for the haven even as leading central banks continue to offer support for economies.

Gold traders are keeping a close watch on the Federal Reserve’s final meeting of the year, with markets widely expecting fresh guidance on its asset-purchase program. The policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) will open its final meeting of 2020 on Tuesday.

"Gold may witness choppy trade amid mixed factors however a sharp rise is unlikely amid vaccine optimism and delay in US stimulus," Kotak Securities said in a note.