Global gold prices steady as North Korea tensions, Fed rate outlook support
Bengaluru: Gold held steady on Wednesday as heightened geopolitical risks over North Korea and concerns about low inflation in US that could delay another rate hike, lent some support.
Spot gold was nearly unchanged at $1,337.94 per ounce by 9.27am, after touching its highest level since September 2016 in the previous session. US gold futures for December delivery edged 0.1% lower to $1,343.10.
“We’re being driven by headlines and a weaker dollar and not necessarily by fundamental reasons, so I’m a little cautious of these levels,” said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at OANDA. “I think headlines regarding the Korean peninsula could cause short-term spikes but it wouldn’t suprise me if gold ran out of a bit of momentum...”
A top North Korean diplomat on Tuesday warned that his country was ready to send “more gift packages” to US as world powers struggled for a response to Pyongyang’s latest nuclear weapons test.
The dollar on Wednesday edged down against the yen, getting closer to a recent 4-1/2 month low, pressured by simmering tensions on the Korean peninsula and on comments by a Federal Reserve official about low US inflation.
Fed policymakers signalled caution on weak inflation and a few backed delaying further interest rate hikes. Higher interest rates tend to boost the dollar and push bond yields up, putting pressure on gold prices by increasing the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.
Spot gold may retest resistance at $1,345 per ounce, a break above which could lead to a gain to the next resistance at $1,350, said Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.
“The technical picture is extremely overbought. We could see a correction to the downside, possibly back almost towards the $1,300-1,310 level,” OANDA’s Halley said. “I suspect that people are bullish on gold, but they don’t really want to buy it at these levels. So, I expect any dips to be met with quite a lot of buying now.”
Among other precious metals, silver was little changed at $17.88 an ounce, while platinum fell 0.5% to $1,001.49. Palladium was up 0.4% at $961.98. Reuters
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