Gold traders are trying to access the policy changes to be undertaken by the incoming Joe Biden administration
Gold is typically considered a hedge against inflation and currency debasement that can result from widespread stimulus
Gold and silver prices edged higher in Indian markets, tracking higher global rates. On MCX, February gold futures rose 0.27% to ₹49,115 per 10 gram while silver gained 0.3% to ₹66,234 per kg. In the previous session, gold and silver had risen 0.2% and 0.9% respectively. In global markets, gold rates moved higher following a weaker US dollar amid expectations of a massive US stimulus.
Janet Yellen, US President-elect Joe Biden's Treasury Secretary nominee, on Tuesday at her confirmation hearing urged lawmakers to "act big" on coronavirus relief spending. This buttressed gold's appeal as an inflation hedge and pressured the dollar. At the same time, Yellen, the former US Fed chairperson, did not say she backs a “strong" dollar.
Spot gold rates today gained 0.5% to $1,848.30 per ounce while the dollar index fell 0.14% to 90.345. The US treasury yields also fell. Lower Treasury yields reduce the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.
Joe Biden is set to be sworn into office today and investors will be focused on his $1.9 trillion stimulus package plan to boost the economy.
"Market players are trying to assess what will be policy changes taken. Biden has already proposed an expansive $1.9 trillion stimulus package however market players want more clarity about other issues like tax hike, US-China relation, currency market involvement etc," Kotak Securities said in a note.
Gold is considered a hedge against inflation and currency debasement that can result from widespread stimulus. After strong gains last year, gold has declined this year as Treasury yields gained along with the US currency. In August last year, gold had hit a record high of ₹56,200 per 10 gram in global markets.
Among other precious metals, silver climbed 0.9% to $25.42 an ounce while platinum rose 1.2% to $1,096.23 and palladium gained 0.4% to $2,361.79.
"Gold may continue to witness choppy trade unless there are fresh triggers however the general bias may be on the upside as prospect of US stimulus and concerns about rising virus cases may continue to support prices," the brokerage added.
The World Gold Council in its outlook for this year said that the investment demand for gold will remain supported this year as investors navigate potential portfolio risks "including ballooning budget deficits, inflationary pressures, and market corrections amid already high equity valuations."
Gold consumption should benefit from the nascent economic recovery, especially in emerging markets, it added.