Gold prices rose slightly on Wednesday, taking some support from a pullback in the dollar and Treasury yields, although focus remained largely on the Jackson Hole Symposium later this week.
The yellow metal saw some relief this week as the dollar rally paused at two-month highs, while Treasury yields fell slightly after reaching over 20-year peaks.
This allowed spot prices to retake the $1,900 an ounce level on Tuesday, although the outlook for the yellow metal still remained dull amid concerns over higher U.S. interest rates.
Spot gold rose 0.2% to $1,901.31 an ounce, while gold futures expiring in December rose 0.2% to $1,929.55 an ounce by 00:09 ET (04:09 GMT).
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Markets were now focused squarely on an address by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell at the Jackson Hole Symposium on Friday.
Analysts warned that Powell could flag an era of higher U.S. interest rates, especially given that inflation has remained sticky and the labor market is strong.
Any signals on higher U.S. rates are likely to spark more losses in gold, given that rising rates push up the opportunity cost of investing in the yellow metal.
This trade had battered gold over the past year, with the metal coming under renewed pressure in August after data showed U.S. inflation remained sticky in July.
Despite a recovery this week, gold prices were still trading close to five-month lows, with a recovery in the yellow metal expected to be short-lived as U.S. rates remain higher for longer.
Among industrial metals, copper prices also benefited from weakness in the dollar, with futures rising 0.4% to $3.7707 a pound on Wednesday.
Investors were awaiting a slew of purchasing managers’ index (PMI) readings from the U.S. and the euro zone, due later in the day, for more cues on global manufacturing activity.
Readings from Japan and Australia showed some resilience, although the outlook for the two economies remained under pressure from souring sentiment towards China.
Also in focus was any more stimulus measures from China, after the People’s Bank disappointed markets with a smaller-than-expected interest rate cut this week.
China is the world’s largest copper importer, and is facing a slowing post-COVID economic recovery due to headwinds from weak spending and a potential property market crisis.
Concerns over China had also battered copper prices over the past year. - Investing