Gold up on technical trading

Chicago, Dec 1 (IANS) Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose on a technical trading bounce, despite a stronger US dollar.

The most active gold contract for February delivery added $9.1 (0.86 percent) on Monday to settle at $1,065.30 per ounce, Xinhua reported.

In November, gold futures lost $76.1 (6.67 percent). According to MarketWatch, this is their largest monthly percentage drop since June 2013.

October’s pending home sales index is up only 0.2 percent, the National Association of Realtors said on Monday.

Some analysts noted that this soft data was sharply lower than expectations, boosting demands of gold.

Additionally, analysts noted that gold hit a key support level then rebounded on Monday.

However, the precious metal remains near a six-year-low, as an increase in the Federal Reserve’s key interest rate is likely to occur during the December Federal Open Market Commitee (FOMC) meeting on December 15, according to analysts.

Expectations were originally for a delay in the rate hike till 2016 but the FOMC meeting in late October confirmed that the Fed wants to raise rates before the end of 2015.

An increase in the Fed’s interest rate drives investors away from gold and towards assets with a return, as the precious metal bears no interest.

There has not been an increase in the Fed’s interest rate since June 2006, before the beginning of the US financial crisis.

According to the CME Group’s Fedwatch tool, the current implied probability of a rate hike during the December FOMC meeting are unchanged, at 78 percent, which is much higher than in recent months, where the chances were as low as 40 percent.

Traders will watch the economic data due out later this week very closely for clues on the Fed’s thought process.

Manufacturing data is due out on Tuesday, the weekly jobless claims is due on Thursday, and the big November jobs report, as well as the international trade report is due out on Friday.

Analysts believe that the market has now fully factored in the expected December rate hike, and that the market is now unsure of when the next rate hike, from a 0.50 rate to a 0.75 rate, will occur.

The Fedwatch tool shows an implied probability indicating that the market believes that the Fed may raise rates from 0.50 to 0.75 during the March FOMC meeting.

The current implied probability of a hike from 0.50 to 0.75 is at 38 percent at the March meeting, and 11 percent at the January meeting.

Silver for March delivery added 3.8 cents (0.27 percent) to close at $14.086 per ounce.

Platinum for January delivery dropped $2.9 (0.35 percent) to close at $832.90 per ounce.


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