Picture: 123RF/REALROCKING
Picture: 123RF/REALROCKING

Bengaluru — Gold rose on Tuesday as a recent dip to multi-week lows attracted some bargain hunters, but prices were well within recent ranges as the dollar remained on an upward trajectory.

Spot gold rose 0.4% to $1,192.43 per ounce at 9.26am GMT, after shedding about 0.3% in the previous session. US gold futures were 0.4% higher at $1,196.10.

“It is unusual that gold is trading higher, even with the stronger dollar. People are looking to buy into gold as they believe that prices below $1,200 are, indeed, attractive,” Julius Bär analyst Carsten Menke said.

A higher dollar makes bullion more expensive for holders of other currencies, curtailing demand.

Gold prices have fallen for the past six months, losing 13%, largely due to dollar strength, with the US currency benefiting from a vibrant US economy and fears of a global trade war.

Market participants are also on the lookout for any additional clues on the pace of interest rate hikes from US Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell, who will be speaking on “The Outlook for Employment and Inflation” before the National Association for Business Economics later in the day.

“In the gold market, there is no evidence that the bulls have gained any strength. Of course, the main economic data with the ability to move the gold price needle substantially is the upcoming US non-farm payrolls on Friday,” ThinkMarkets UK chief markets analyst Naeem Aslam said in a note.

The Fed raised rates last week and said it planned four more increases by the end of 2019 and another in 2020, citing steady economic growth and a robust jobs market. Rising interest rates boost the dollar by increasing the opportunity cost of holding gold.

The negative sentiment in gold has led to liquidations in gold-backed exchange traded funds (ETFs), with holdings of SPDR Gold, the largest gold ETF falling more than 4-million ounces since a peak in April. On Monday, SPDR holdings fell 0.3%.

“Gold is approaching a 50-day moving average around $1,200 and if prices break above that we may have a new trading range we have not seen since July,” Mitsubishi analyst Jonathan Butler said.

Silver was little changed at $14.46 an ounce. Palladium was down 0.6% to $1,050.20, while platinum eased 0.1%, to $820.40.

Reuters