Gold futures pared most of their losses on Thursday in New York, to close almost following a rebound in the U.S. dollar which put some pressure on the precious metal.

Gold for April delivery closed at $948.80, down 40 cents an ounce on the Comex division on the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Wednesday, the precious metal gained $14.20, or 1.5 percent to settle at $949.20 an ounce.

The trade was slower-paced, but did not seem to want to give up much of the gains achieved in recent sessions, said Jon Nadler, senior analyst at Kitco Bullion Dealers, in a research note.

Gold remains on course for a test of resistance near $965 an ounce, Nadler said.

The greenback dropped down from session highs in afternoon trading, but still held onto most of its modest gains against its major rivals. The Commerce Department said on Thursday the U.S. economy slowed abruptly in the fourth quarter, growing at a 0.6 percent annual rate, the slowest pace since late 2002.

Also on the Nymex, May copper gained 14 cents to $3.87 a pound. June palladium dropped $5.90 to $453.80 an ounce. May silver gained 17 cents to $18.55 an ounce and April platinum rose $31.10 to $2,043.70 an ounce.