Global gold prices hit five-month peak on weaker dollar, geopolitical tensions

Spot gold showed a 0.1% gain at $1,286.69 an ounce at 3.05pm, while US gold futures for June delivery were up $10.50 at $1,288.60


Spot gold is expected to climb to $1,303 per ounce as it has broken above resistance at $1,282. Photo: AFP
Spot gold is expected to climb to $1,303 per ounce as it has broken above resistance at $1,282. Photo: AFP

Bengaluru: Gold rallied to a five-month high on Thursday, on track for its best week since June, after the previous day’s comments by US President Donald Trump on the strength of the dollar knocked the currency half a percent lower.

The dollar came under heavy pressure along with Treasury yields after Trump said that strength in the US currency would eventually hurt the economy.

With concerns over North Korea and the Middle East already supporting gold, the currency moved nudged it up to its strongest since early November at $1,287.98 an ounce before steadying in later trade.

Spot gold showed a 0.1% gain at $1,286.69 an ounce at 3.05pm, while US gold futures for June delivery were up $10.50 at $1,288.60.

“Gold’s recapture of $1,280 for the first time since November is significant, as it opens up a trading range potentially to $1,300,” Mitsubishi analyst Jonathan Butler said. “However, gold is now moving into overbought territory ... and there is elevated risk of profit-taking from here. Nonetheless, risk aversion should continue to support gold in the medium term.”

Trading volumes in wider markets have been light ahead of Easter, with most financial markets closed from the Good Friday holiday.

Trump’s comments put the US dollar and Treasury yields on track for their biggest weekly declines this year, while stock markets fell half a percent in Europe.

Fears of a new weapons test by North Korea as a US carrier group sailed towards the region, as well as worries about the forthcoming French presidential election, also kept investors on edge.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday that trust had eroded between the United States and Russia under Trump, as Moscow delivered an unusually hostile reception to U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in a face-off over Syria.

“We remain constructive on gold (given) elevated political tensions in both Korea and Syria, coupled with a lower drift evident in US equity markets,” INTL FCStone said in a note.

Among the major physical gold markets, the precious metal was sold at a discount to spot prices in India this week for the first time in six weeks, while demand elsewhere in Asia remained subdued as surging bullion prices deterred buyers.

Among other precious metals, silver was up 0.5% at $18.56, off an earlier five-month high of $18.57. Platinum was 0.2% higher at $970.85, while palladium rose 0.9% to $804. Reuters

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