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Gold Falls As Rallying US Dollar, Economic Reopening Weigh on Metal

May 11, 2020 at 14:45 by Andrew Moran

Gold futures are slumping to start the trading week, driven by a strengthening US dollar and investors monitoring various economies – at home and abroad – beginning to reopen. The yellow metal has been trending relatively downward this month due to growing market sentiment in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic.

June gold futures tumbled $10.90, or 0.64%, to $1,703.00 per ounce at 14:22 GMT on Monday on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Last week, the yellow metal recorded a moderate gain of 0.4%. But gold prices are still up more than 12% year-to-date.

Silver, the sister commodity to gold, is also slipping to kick off the trading week. July silver futures dipped $0.043, or 0.27%, to $15.735 an ounce. The white metal enjoyed a huge 5% weekly gain, but it has plummeted more than 12% so far this year.

The biggest factor for the metals market on Monday is a rallying greenback. The US Dollar Index, which measures the buck against a basket of currencies, surged 0.32% to 100.05, from an opening of 99.12. The greenback jumped 0.6% last week, adding to its 4% advance in 2020. A stronger buck is bad for commodities priced in dollars because it makes it more expensive for foreign investors to purchase.

One of the reasons for the dollar’s ascent is uncertainty in global financial markets amid concerns over a renewed US-China trade dispute. Both sides have been engaging in a war of words over Beijing’s handling of the COVID-19 public health crisis, and President Donald Trump has warned he is seeking retribution for the pandemic, including tariffs.

China might already be in hot water with the White House for falling short on meeting the provisions of the phase one trade agreement. President Trump revealed that he is considering canceling the partial trade agreement. His decision might be guided by a recent report that US exports to China could total just $60 billion this year – the trade deal required $186.6 billion in purchases. In the January-to-March period, US shipments to China slumped 10%, led by soybean, energy, and commercial aircraft exports.

The People’s Bank of China (PBoC) suggested in its first-quarter monetary policy report that it will unleash additional stimulus. The PBoC is joining the long list of central banks pulling the trigger on aggressive stimulus measures, which would be a boon for gold due to inflation and currency crisis fears.

Analysts are also warning about the threat of a second wave of the coronavirus affecting nations that are only now beginning to reopen. South Korean health authorities are already sounding the alarm about a resurgence of the highly infectious respiratory illness after gradually opening up the country.

According to the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), hedge funds and money managers cut their bullish positions in COMEX gold contracts in the week ending May 5.

In other metal markets, June copper futures dropped $0.032, or 1.33%, to $2.374 a pound. June platinum futures shed $10.70, or 1.36%, to $778.60 per ounce. June palladium futures slid $6.50, or 0.36%, to $1,814.60 per ounce.

If you have any questions and comments on the commodities today, use the form below to reply.

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