April 23, 2018 / 4:28 AM / a month ago

PRECIOUS-Gold slips to 2-wk low as rising bond yields support dollar

    * Spot gold may test support at $1,326/oz -technicals
    * Speculators raise net long positions in gold- CFTC

 (Updates prices)
    By Apeksha Nair
    BENGALURU, April 23 (Reuters) - Gold prices slipped to their
lowest level in nearly two weeks in  range-bound trade on
Monday, as the dollar rose on the back of climbing U.S. Treasury
yields and as global political concerns eased.
    Spot gold        was down about 0.1 percent at $1,334.11 per
ounce at 0649 GMT, after earlier touching its lowest since April
10 at $1,331.70.
    U.S. gold futures         fell 0.2 percent to $1,336.30 per
ounce.
    "Gold prices dropped back to the levels of around a week
ago, with easing geopolitical tensions, the stronger USD and
gains in U.S. rates affecting the market," ANZ analysts said in
a note. 
    The dollar traded near a two-week high against a basket of
major currencies on Monday, bolstered by rising U.S. bond yields
 and as concerns eased over global political risks after North
Korea said it would suspend nuclear and missile tests, scrap its
nuclear test site and pursue economic growth and peace.       
               
    "We're on another high for the year for dollar yields and
it's not boding well for gold," a Hong Kong-based trader said.
    Yields on benchmark 10-year Treasuries             climbed
to the highest level since January 2014 on Friday. Higher U.S.
bond yields tend to boost the dollar and weigh on
greenback-denominated gold.       
    Expectations that the Federal Reserve would raise interest
rates three more times in 2018 after strong U.S. data last week,
were also supporting the dollar.                           
    Gold prices were slightly supported by the arbitrage in Asia
and as it held its 50-day moving average around $1,332 an ounce,
the trader said.   
    "But I think Europe will look for the bigger picture which
is dollar strength and I think they'll look to sell into this
rally."
    Speculators raised their net long positions in COMEX gold by
5,382 contracts to 143,594 contracts in the week to April 17,
U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed on Friday.
            
    Spot gold may test support at $1,326 per ounce, following
its failure to break resistance at $1,354, Reuters technical
analyst Wang Tao said.             
    Among other precious metals, spot silver        fell 0.1
percent to $17.09 per ounce.
    Platinum        was about 0.5 percent higher at $926.70 an
ounce, while palladium        rose 0.1 percent to $1,031.22 an
ounce.
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