Global gold prices drop on profit-taking, firm dollar
Gold prices fell on Thursday after hitting a three-and-a-half-month high the session before, pulled down as investors took profits and as the US dollar firmed. Spot gold was down 0.3% at $1,308.82 an ounce at 12.42pm. US gold futures dropped 0.6% to $1,310 an ounce.
Spot gold marked its highest since 15 September at $1,321.33 on Wednesday, but then dropped as the dollar recovered from over three-month lows. It fell further after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s December policy bolstered expectations for more US interest rate hikes.
Gold, which had rallied $85 from nearly five-month lows hit in mid-December, posted its first day of losses in nearly three weeks on Wednesday.
“People are looking to lock in some gains after a pretty strong rally over the past weeks,” said ANZ analyst Daniel Hynes. “Geopolitical issues have certainly been a huge power point of the gold’s rally into the year-end ... It is going to be a US dollar type story going forward with markets taking a neutral view.”
The dollar was firm on Thursday in the wake of upbeat US data.
US factory activity increased more than expected in December, boosted by a surge in new orders growth, in a further sign of strong economic momentum at the end of 2017.
Minutes from the Fed’s 12-13 December meeting were seen as more hawkish than anticipated, indicating the central bank is still poised to raise interest rates several times this year. The minutes suggested that the central bank would continue to pursue a gradual approach in raising rates but could pick up the pace if inflation accelerates.
Gold is highly sensitive to rising US interest rates as they increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion, while boosting the dollar, in which it is priced.
“We still feel that gold has come a long way and may correct a little further from here,” MKS PAMP trader Alex Thorndike said. “That being said we view a pullback towards $1,290-$1,295 as a decent buying opportunity.”
Spot silver fell 0.6% to $17 an ounce, after hitting a six-week high on Wednesday at $17.24. Spot platinum was down over 1% at $943 an ounce. Spot palladium rose 0.4% to $1,086.95. It touched an all-time high on Tuesday at $1,096.50. Reuters
- Sushma Swaraj meets Wang Yi to discuss India-China ties
- Brouhaha should not be created over rape cases in big country like India: Santosh Gangwar
- Sitaram Yechury re-elected as CPI(M) general secretary
- 31 killed in suicide attack on Kabul voter registration centre
- Air India flight faces turbulence, leaves 3 passengers injured, window panel comes off