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Gold sees little love from rate cut expectations; Copper struggles

Published 03/06/2024, 02:50 pm
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Investing.com-- Gold prices fell in Asian trade on Monday, as a rush into risk-driven assets, on the back of increased rate cut expectations, largely left out the yellow metal, even as the dollar sank.

Among industrial metals, copper prices retreated tracking mixed purchasing managers index data from top importer China, while a speculative frenzy that had initially fueled the metal’s advance also cooled. 

Gold was also hit by waning safe haven demand after reports suggested that Israel and Hamas were close to entering a U.S.-brokered ceasefire agreement, which could dial down geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. 

Spot gold fell 0.3% to $2,321.51 an ounce, while gold futures expiring in August fell 0.2% to $2,341.55 an ounce by 00:31 ET (04:31 GMT). 

Gold retreats as rate cut speculation boosts stocks 

Losses in the yellow metal came as traders piled into more risk-driven assets, especially as recent data showed some cooling in U.S. inflation. Asian stocks surged on Monday.

PCE price index data, which is the Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation gauge, eased as expected in April, data showed on Friday. This sparked some bets that the Fed will begin cutting rates in September, with the CME Fedwatch tool now showing a greater chance of a 25 basis point rate cut. 

Still, this notion will be tested in the coming days with nonfarm payrolls data due this Friday and a Fed meeting next week.

Expectations of rate cuts by the European Central Bank and the Bank of Canada, at their respective meetings this week, also provided little support to gold. 

Other precious metals were somewhat mixed on Monday, after outperforming gold in recent weeks. Platinum futures rose 0.3% to $1,046.60 an ounce, while silver futures fell 0.2% to $30.370 an ounce.

Copper prices struggle amid mixed China cues 

Benchmark copper futures on the London Metal Exchange steadied at $10,093.50 a tonne, while one-month copper futures fell 0.2% to $4.6160 a pound. 

Both contracts plummeted from recent record highs as a speculative frenzy that had fueled a copper rally through April and early-May ran dry.

Middling economic data from China also fueled doubts over demand for the red metal.

Private PMI data on Monday showed China’s manufacturing sector grew more than expected in May. But this contrasted government PMI data from last week, which showed the manufacturing sector contracted in May. 

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