NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Spot gold prices were dropping with the broader equities -- an example of how gold is increasingly having a positive correlation with equities due to the fact that it's being treated like them by big spec funds.

"The entree of speculative institutional players has (unfortunately) morphed gold into an asset that now moves in tandem with equities and other, so-called conventional assets, to which bullion historically used to be inversely correlated," Kitco analyst Jon Nadler tells

TheStreet

.

New York spot gold prices were falling by $4.60, or 0.4%, to $1,227.80 an ounce Friday afternoon.

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New York spot silver prices were lower by 34 cents, or 1.9%, at $17.97 an ounce.

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New York spot platinum prices, meanwhile, were tumbling by $14, or 0.9%, to $1,508.00 an ounce, while its sister metal was losing traction.

New York spot palladium prices were retreating by $7, or 1.5%, to $476 an ounce.

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A handful of mining stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) were trading in negative territory Friday afternoon. Mining stocks offer another form of exposure to precious metals.

SPDR Gold Trust

(GLD) - Get Report

was falling 0.3% to $120.03, while

Stillwater Mining

(SWC)

was tumbling by 3.3% to $13.38.

Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold

(FCX) - Get Report

was down by 1.8% to $70.82.

ETFS Physical Palladium Shares

(PALL) - Get Report

was lower by 1.6% to $47.62.

Barrick Gold

(ABX)

was inching down by 0.5% to $44.66.

-- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York

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