November 7, 2018 / 6:08 AM / in 9 days

Gold slips as dollar firms ahead of Fed policy statement

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Gold eased to a one-week low on Thursday, as a recovery in the dollar and improved appetite for riskier assets ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s policy statement, pushed investors away from bullion.

FILE PHOTO: An employee sorts gold bars in the Austrian Gold and Silver Separating Plant in Vienna, Austria, December 15, 2017. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger/File Photo

Spot gold fell 0.1 percent to $1,224.78 per ounce at 11:27 EST, after touching its lowest since Nov. 1 at $1,219.59 earlier in the session.

U.S. gold futures for December delivery fell 0.3 percent to $1,225.5 per ounce.

“Gold is unquestionably dollar-watching, and by extension looking at the (interest) rates,” said Ross Norman, chief executive officer of Sharps Pixley.

“The market is drifting a little lower today on expectations of further rate hikes. If the rates go higher, it is a slightly negative story for gold.”

Although the Fed is not expected to raise interest rates until its next gathering in December, market participants are waiting to see whether it offers clues about possible rate increases in December and in 2019.

Higher interest rates raise the opportunity costs of holding gold, which earns nothing and costs money to store and insure.

“A failure to continue the momentum a little higher could see gold moving back to the psychologically (important) $1,200 level,” Norman said.

The precious metal remains down more than 10 percent from its April peak after investors preferred the dollar as the U.S.-China trade war unfolded against a background of higher U.S. interest rates.

The dollar extended its recovery following a sigh of relief across markets after the U.S. midterm election results, and as investors turned their attention towards the Fed. [USD/]

Gold is on track to post a fifth straight session of losses, hurt more broadly by a recovery in investor appetite for nominally higher-risk assets like stocks. [MKTS/GLOB]

“Risk appetite in the world marketplace is mostly upbeat following the U.S. mid-term elections that produced a divided Congress,” Kitco Metals senior analyst Jim Wyckoff said in a note.

“A rebound in the U.S. dollar index today, following selling pressure this week, is working against the precious metals market bulls.”

Silver fell 0.9 percent to $14.44 per ounce.

Palladium was steady at $1,134.0 per ounce. It touched a two-week high of $1,139.50 an ounce in the previous session.

Platinum was down 0.1 percent at $872.2 an ounce, after hitting its highest since June 25 at $877.50 an ounce on Wednesday.

Reporting by Swati Verma and Karthika Suresh Namboothiri in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr

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