Gold nudges up as dollar eases; China-U.S. trade tensions in focus

Gold edged up on Wednesday, after slipping to a more than one-week low in the previous session, as the dollar eased despite concerns of an escalation in the trade conflict between the United States and China.

Spot gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,193.31 at 0355 GMT, after touching a more than one-week low at $1,189.20 on Tuesday.

U.S. gold futures were up 0.1 percent at $1,199.70 an ounce.

“We are in a situation where it is completely a dollar driven trade. Until we get a convincing breakout (in gold)… the markets are going to be reticent,” said Stephen Innes, Asia-Pacific trading head at OANDA.

“The U.S. dollar can actually see a bit a reversal on the fact that we are not seeing a big wave of panic as there hasn’t been any significant impact on U.S. equity markets,” he said, adding gold prices would hover around $1,190-$1,210 range in the short term.

A stronger greenback makes dollar-priced gold costlier for non-U.S. investors.

Fears of a hit to global growth from U.S. President Donald Trump’s ‘America First’ protectionist policies have kept markets in a state of heightened anxiety for much of this year.

Trump could follow through on plans to impose levies on $200 billion more of Chinese imports after a public comment period on his proposed new tariffs on Chinese goods is set to end on Thursday.

Meanwhile, markets are closely watching an employment report on Friday, which could influence gold’s moves as investors look for clues on the pace of U.S. interest rate increases.

Gold is highly sensitive to rising rates, which lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding assets such as bullion.

The yellow metal has lost about 8.4 percent this year amid rising U.S. interest rates, trade disputes and the Turkish currency crisis, with investors parking their money in the dollar, undermining the metal’s safe haven status.

The bearish sentiment in gold has reflected in heavy liquidations in SPDR Gold, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund. Holdings have fallen 14.2 percent since a peak in late April, and 1.1 percent to 746.92 tonnes on Tuesday.

Spot gold may break a support at $1,190 per ounce and fall towards $1,179, as suggested by its wave pattern, a projection analysis and a falling channel, according to Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

Spot silver was up 0.1 percent at $14.10, after falling to the lowest since January 2016 at $13.97 on Tuesday.

Platinum rose 0.3 percent to $778.60. Prices touched their lowest since Aug. 16 at $761.80 in the prior session.

Palladium was up 0.3 percent at $982.75, after touching a 11-week peak at $988.47 on Tuesday.

source: CNBC

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