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Gold Plunges to 17-Month Low As Dollar Boosted by Turkish Crisis

August 13, 2018 at 16:32 by Andrew Moran

Gold futures are plummeting to their lowest levels in about 17 months to kick off the trading week. The yellow metal is flirting with $1,200 as the US dollar is receiving a boost thanks to the financial crisis unfolding in Turkey.

December gold futures tumbled $15.70, or 1.29%, to $1,203.30 per ounce at 16:07 GMT on Monday. Gold, which recorded a tepid weekly loss of 0.3% last week, is trading at its worst level since March 2017 as investors flee the precious metal.

Silver, the sister commodity to gold, is also crashing to start the trading week. September silver futures shed $0.23, or 1.54%, to $15.06 an ounce. The white metal is also inching below the crucial $15 threshold as prices posted a 1% loss last week.

The US dollar is continuing its rally on Monday as the greenback surged 1.28% to 96.39, a one-year high. The currency is gaining on the Turkish turmoil, which has sent the lira spiraling another 10%, an issue that stems from President Donald Trump slapping tariffs on the nation’s aluminum and steel exports. The Turkish government has promised that it will retaliate, adding that officials will adopt accomodative fiscal policy to stimulate the economy in bearish times. But analysts fear that the regime may increase control over the economy and enhance its state power during its fight with the Trump administration.

A strengthening buck, lodging a 1.23% weekly gain, is bad for dollar-pegged commodities because it makes it more expensive for foreign investors to purchase.

Rather buying gold as a safe-haven, traders are seeking refuge in the dollar by acquiring Treasuries. The 10-year Treasury note yield held steady at 2.869%, a three-week low.

According to the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), traders are dumping gold: hedge funds and money managers have added more than 22,000 contracts to their net short positions, raising the total to 63,282 contracts, a record high.

Other metal commodities are dropping on Monday. September copper futures were flat at $2.73 a pound. September platinum futures cratered $26.40, or 3.18%, to $803.20 an ounce. September palladium futures fell $13.00, or 1.44%, to $888.10 per ounce.

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