Gold prices rise as US dollar eases

Gold prices rose slightly early Thursday, after hitting a one-year low in the previous session, as the U.S. dollar eased off a three-week high.

Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at $1,227.55 an ounce at 0058 GMT. The metal fell to its lowest since mid-July 2017 at $1,220.81.

U.S. gold futures for August delivery were little changed at $1,227.40 an ounce.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.1 percent at 95.022 after hitting a three-week high of 95.407 on Wednesday.

In a closely watched two-day congressional testimony, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said he believed the United States was on course for years more of steady growth, and carefully played down the risks to the U.S. economy of an escalating trade conflict.

Manufacturers in every one of the Federal Reserve’s 12 districts worried about the impact of tariffs, a Federal Reserve report said on Wednesday, even as the U.S. economy continued to expand at a moderate to modest pace.

A prolonged U.S. trade war with China and Europe would dent global economic growth and force investors to reassess the profitability of U.S. companies, some of the biggest hedge funds and private equity investors in the United States warned at an investment conference on Wednesday.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday the United States may hammer out a trade deal with Mexico, and then do a separate one with Canada later, sowing fresh doubts about the future of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)

The White House struggled on Wednesday to contain a political outcry and confusion over Trump’s summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, denying Trump ever meant to say that Moscow was no longer targeting the United States.

Reaching a denuclearization deal with North Korea “may take some time,” U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday, reiterating that sanctions would continue to be enforced in the meantime, even as Russia’s envoy to Pyongyang proposed discussions on easing them.

Canadian miner Detour Gold and activist investor Paulson & Co entered into an increasingly heated public exchange on Wednesday over the hedge fund’s campaign to seek change at the company and a possible merger approach.

Venezuela’s central bank this year began refining gold in Turkey following a wave of international sanctions that have left it unwilling to carry out such operations in Switzerland, the country’s mining minister said on Wednesday.

Source: Reuters