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Gold edges up on falling equities, easing US dollar

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Gold inched up on Wednesday after hitting its lowest in five weeks in the previous session, buoyed as equities fell and the US dollar eased from one-month highs following a tumble in crude oil prices.

[BENGALURU] Gold inched up on Wednesday after hitting its lowest in five weeks in the previous session, buoyed as equities fell and the US dollar eased from one-month highs following a tumble in crude oil prices.

A renewed slump in oil markets to seven-month lows put Asian investors on edge, and pushed down US Treasury yields and the US dollar index against a basket of currencies.

"It's mostly the US dollar (supporting gold). It is a little bit weaker than yesterday's closing," said Yuichi Ikemizu, Tokyo branch manager at ICBC Standard Bank.

Spot gold was up 0.2 per cent at US$1,245.82 per ounce, as of 0801 GMT.

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US gold futures for August delivery climbed 0.3 per cent to US$1,246.7 per ounce Gold is also being supported by a bout of short-covering following its recent weakness, said OCBC analyst Barnabas Gan.

However, the possibility of another interest rate hike by the US Federal Reserve this year is underpinning the bearish outlook for the yellow metal, he added.

Meanwhile, the outlook for inflation and the future of financial stability are emerging as dueling concerns at the heart of a debate at the US central bank over how fast to proceed on future interest-rate hikes.

Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan on Tuesday expressed doubt that short-term interest rates are very accommodative and said he wants to wait for more data to understand whether recent weak inflation readings are transitory as he suspects.

Higher interest rates tend to boost the US dollar and push bond yields up, pressuring gold prices by increasing the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.

Spot gold may break resistance at US$1,248 per ounce and rise towards the next resistance level at US$1,251, as it has managed to stabilise around support at US$1,243, according to Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

"A lack of solid data this week globally won't be helping gold's direction in either way," said OANDA analyst Jeffrey Halley.

Russia's central bank posted an increase in gold reserves in May, the fifth consecutive month of gains.

Among other precious metals, silver gained 0.1 per cent to US$16.47 per ounce, hovering near a six-week low hit in the previous session.

Platinum slid 0.1 per cent to US$917.25 per ounce, while palladium was flat at US$867.99 per ounce.

REUTERS

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