Gold prices firm as dollar eases on cautious Fed speech

BENGALURU: Gold prices held firm on Thursday after notching up their biggest daily per centage gain in nearly two weeks in the previous session, with the dollar easing on dovish comments from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell.

FUNDAMENTALS

Spot gold had inched up 0.1 per cent to $1,221.73 per ounce by 0127 GMT. Prices gained about 0.6 per cent on Wednesday, their biggest one-day per centage gain since Nov. 16.

US gold futures were down 0.2 per cent at $1,221.6 per ounce.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, slipped about 0.6 per cent on Wednesday, its steepest per centage decline since Nov. 1.

Powell injected investors with a strong dose of optimism on Wednesday, saying that the central bank’s policy rate is now “just below” estimates of a level that neither brakes nor boosts a healthy US economy, comments that many investors read as signaling the Fed’s three-year tightening cycle is drawing to a close.

The US economy slowed in the third quarter as previously reported, but the pace was likely strong enough to keep growth on track to hit the Trump administration’s 3 per cent target this year, even as momentum appears to have moderated further early in the fourth quarter.

Britain risks suffering an even bigger hit to its economy than during the global financial crisis 10 years ago if it leaves the European Union in a worst-case Brexit scenario in four months’ time, the Bank of England said on Wednesday.

Palladium was down 0.3 per cent at $1,180.70 per ounce after surging to a record-high of $1,186.30 in the previous session.

The global platinum market will be oversupplied by around half a million ounces both this year and next, an industry report said on Wednesday, suggesting little respite for producers facing prices languishing near 10-year lows.

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