Gold steady as U.S. rate hike fears persist

Gold steady as U.S. rate hike fears persist

A one-kilogram gold bar sits at Gold Investments Ltd. bullion dealers in this arranged photograph in London, U.K., on Wednesday, July 29, 2020.

Chris Ratcliffe | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Gold prices were little changed on Thursday as traders waited for U.S. growth data for more clues on the pace of Federal Reserve rates hikes and a stronger dollar capped advances.

Spot gold edged up 0.1% to $1,826.96 per ounce by 1253 GMT. U.S. gold futures delivery fell 0.3% to $1,835.30.

Gold remains in a consolidation phase, but a firm GDP figure today would allow the Fed to keep rates higher for longer, which would be dollar positive and by extension weigh on gold, said independent analyst Ross Norman.

The dollar index held near multi-week highs.

However, bullion is probably getting a lift on news that Russia is to suspend its membership of the nuclear arms limitation accord, Norman added.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday that Russia’s decision to suspend participation in the latest START bilateral nuclear arms control treaty made the world a more dangerous place, and he urged Moscow to reconsider.

On the data front, market participants will be scanning the U.S. fourth quarter and year 2022 (advance estimate) gross domestic product figure for clues on economic health amid talks of more higher for longer rate hikes and solid economic data last week that pointed to elevated inflation.

High interest rates dampen gold’s appeal as an inflation hedge while raising the opportunity cost of holding the non-yielding asset.

Gold may test the support of $1,816 per ounce, a break below which could open the way to $1,793, said Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

Elsewhere, spot silver rose 0.5% to $21.60 per ounce, platinum gained 0.8% to $956.27 while palladium fell 0.4% to $1,476.06.

“Lower South African production, ongoing substitution from palladium to platinum in autocatalysts, and a higher gold price keeps us positive on platinum, but we delay the price recovery by three months,” UBS said in a note.

“While economic growth concerns remain a headwind for the white metal, outlook for platinum remains positive.”

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