"You can't really have both: it's either the Chinese investors are buying gold and the economy is good, but right now the economy doesn't look that good in China," Jacobs said in an interview. "The question is, are there going to be Chinese buyers of gold?"

A major shift in gold prices could next occur in mid-June when the Fed releases it's next policy-making statement. That statement will emerged June 19, when the central bank will also issue its U.S. economic projections and when Chairman Bernanke will hold his next press conference.

"Gold's going to stay in a technical trading zone right now," said Jonathan Rose, chief executive of Capital Gold Group. "The volumes of gold being traded is definitely down."

Gold mining stocks were mostly higher on Thursday. Shares of Kinross Gold ( KGC) rose 3%, while shares of Yamana Gold ( AUY) increased 1%.

Among volume leaders, Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF ( GDX) lifted 0.72%.

Gold ETF SPDR Gold Trust ( GLD) added 2% to $134.63 a share, while iShares Gold Trust ( IAU) tacked on 2% to $13.53 a share.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

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