Agoracom Blog

BULLETIN: Gold Prices Score a Lift as Dollar Softens $ $ $ $ $ $

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 10:19 AM on Tuesday, August 8th, 2017
  • Gold futures rose on Tuesday as the U.S. dollar retreated, giving dollar-pegged commodities a modest lift in early trade.
  • December gold GCZ7, +0.28%  was $5.80, or 0.5%, higher at $1,270.50 an ounce, with the contract looking at back-to-back gains after Monday’s tepid rise.

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index DXY, -0.12% a gauge of the buck against a half-dozen currency rivals, was down 0.1%. Although the dollar has climbed 0.5% so far this month, the currency gauge is down 2.8% over the past 30 days, underscoring the greenback’s recent downtrend amid doubts about the pace of economic growth in the U.S., including signs of weaker-than-hoped-for inflation. The uncertain economic picture leaves financial markets wondering if the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates again this year.

A softening dollar can make assets linked to the currency more attractive to buyers using weaker currencies.

Meanwhile, September silver SIU7, +0.79% added 12 cents, or 0.8%, at $16.38, putting the white metal in position to end a four-session slide.

Tuesday’s rise for metals also comes amid heightened geopolitical risk, headlined by rising tensions between the U.S. and North Korea and its nuclear aspirations.

“Gold needs to break and trade over $1273.30 [an ounce] for the rest of the day to zoom,” said Chintan Karnani, chief market analyst at Insignia Consultants, based in New Delhi.

“Political news from [the U.S.] will be the key market mover today. The fact that U.S. dollar has not zoomed after the release of Friday’s July nonfarm payrolls can result in more losses for the greenback in the short term,” Karnani said.

The Labor Department on Friday showed that the U.S. added a better-than-expected 209,000 in July, pushing the unemployment rate to a 16-year low at 4.3%, but wage data remained tepid.

Mark O’Byrne, research director at GoldCore Ltd., said Friday’s selling in gold after the jobs report may have been overdone and said recent moves for the metal reflects that view. It’s also reflective of an uptick in concerns about meaningfully adding to assets perceived as risky with concerns persisting over drama in President Donald Trump’s White House and worries about a potential hike to the U.S. debt ceiling to avoid a government shutdown.

“I think there’s a little bit of risk aversion in the market,” O’Byrne said.

The Goldcore analyst said he’s optimistic on gold’s price for those reasons but recognizes that it could easily swing lower on sentiment that favors risk assets like stocks, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.14% and the S&P 500 index SPX, -0.16% both hitting all-time highs on Monday.

Tuesday’s modest gains in metals also comes as China trade data showed July exports and imports grew at a slower pace than they had recently, which should be a headwind for commodities prices.

Lackluster data have pressured shares of European miners, including iron-ore producers BHP Billiton PLC BLT, -1.29% BHP, -1.41% BHP, -0.23%  and Rio Tinto PLC RIO, -1.66% RIO, -1.25% RIO, -0.45% Anglo American PLC AAL, -0.50% lost 0.5%, while copper miner Antofagasta PLC ANTO, -0.52% moved down 1.2%.

In exchange-traded funds, the SPDR Gold Shares GLD, +0.45% rose 0.5% premarket, mining-company focused VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF GDX, +0.86% advanced 0.9%, while silver-oriented iShares Silver SLV, +1.17% gained 0.9%.


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