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Gold grain at a refinery in Russia. Picture: BLOOMBERG/ANDREY RUDAKOV
Gold grain at a refinery in Russia. Picture: BLOOMBERG/ANDREY RUDAKOV

Bengaluru — Gold prices edged higher on Monday, supported by a slight pullback in US treasury yields, although bullion’s outlook remained vulnerable to aggressive interest-rate hikes by central banks.

Spot gold was up 0.1% at $1,853.43/oz, as of 2.08am GMT, while US gold futures rose 0.3% to $1,856.20. Gold was still trading below last week’s highs with prices dropping about 1% on Friday after data showed US employers hired more workers than expected in May and maintained a fairly strong pace of wage increases.

“Coming after the recent US jobs report, market participants will continue to be highly sensitive to any cues on central banks’ policy outlook, with guidance from the RBA and ECB on watch this week, along with the key US CPI data,” said Yeap Jun Rong, a market strategist at IG.

The US CPI data this Friday will be the next focus for further signals about the Federal Reserve's tightening path. The Fed is on track for half-a-point interest-rate increases at June and July policy meetings, and Friday’s jobs report raised the possibility of rate hikes even beyond. Investors also ramped up their bets on European Central Bank interest rate rises in 2022, and priced in a bigger, 50-basis-point hike at one of the bank's policy meetings by October.

Higher rates raise the opportunity cost of holding gold, which yields no interest.

The higher oil prices also did not provide much relief on the inflation front, translating into the risks of more persistent inflation pressuring central banks to tighten more aggressively, Jun Rong added. In other metals, silver climbed 1.5% to $22.24/oz and palladium added 1.6% to $2,007.18. Platinum rose 0.6% to $1,019.79/oz, after hitting its highest since late March at $1,032.50/oz on Friday.



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