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Investment Watch

April 21, 1996

Gold bullion's glimmer is fading, and that is finally tarnishing gold-mining stock mutual funds, which have been this year's leading fund sector. The April gold futures contract on the New York Commodity Exchange closed at $390.60 an ounce Friday, off $4 for the week. That leaves gold just barely above its year-end close after topping at $414 on Feb. 2. Meanwhile, gold-mining stock funds had held up well despite gold's slide, but fell more than 2% on average last week, cutting their year-to-date average gain to 22%. Gold faces a big test this week: International Monetary Fund directors will meet to discuss selling a portion of the IMF's gold hoard. Such sales could potentially depress gold further.

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