🔥 Premium AI-powered Stock Picks from InvestingPro Now up to 50% OffCLAIM SALE

Gold prices steady with PCE test in focus, copper slips on weak China PMIs

Published 31-05-2024, 10:08 am
© Reuters.

Investing.com-- Gold prices steadied in Asian trade on Friday, with traders remaining wary of the yellow metal before key U.S. inflation data that is likely to factor into the outlook for interest rates.

Among industrial metals, copper prices slipped tracking weaker-than-expected purchasing managers index data from top importer China. 

Metal markets saw some relief on Friday after the dollar slid from over two-week highs in overnight trade, tracking weak gross domestic product figures. But this relief was limited, as fears of sticky inflation and high interest rates persisted before key inflation data.

Spot gold steadied at $2,342.86 an ounce, while gold futures expiring in August fell 0.1% to $2,363.80 an ounce by 00:19 ET (04:19 GMT). The yellow metal was still set to gain about 2.6% in May, after it shot up to record highs earlier in the month. 

Gold trims May gains, PCE test looms 

But gold was now trading about $100 below its May record highs, as fears of high-for-longer U.S. interest rates sparked some profit-taking in the yellow metal.

A string of Federal Reserve officials warned in recent weeks that the central bank had little confidence to begin trimming interest rates, amid sticky inflation. 

This put PCE price index data- which is the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge- squarely in focus. The reading is due later on Friday and is expected to show inflation cooled slightly in April but remained well above the Fed’s 2% annual target range.

High-for-longer interest rates bode poorly for gold and other precious metals, given that they push up the opportunity cost of investing in the space.

Platinum, silver set for bumper gains in May

Other precious metals sank on Friday, also seeing a measure of profit-taking after strong gains through May. Platinum futures fell 0.6% to $1,028.95 an ounce, while silver futures slid 1.6% to $31.030 an ounce. But the two metals were up 9% and 17%, respectively, in May, as they benefited from exposure to a speculative frenzy that drove up the prices of industrial metals.

Both platinum and silver have some industrial applications. 

Copper prices sink on weak China PMIs

Benchmark copper futures on the London Metal Exchange steadied at $10,141.0 a tonne, while one-month copper futures fell 0.5% to $4.6350 a pound. 

Both contracts wiped out a bulk of their gains through May despite hitting record highs, as a speculative frenzy died down and gave way to severe profit-taking. 

Sentiment towards copper was also dented by weaker-than-expected PMI data from top copper importer China. China’s manufacturing sector unexpectedly contracted in May, while non-manufacturing activity grew at a slower pace. 


Latest comments

Risk Disclosure: Trading in financial instruments and/or cryptocurrencies involves high risks including the risk of losing some, or all, of your investment amount, and may not be suitable for all investors. Prices of cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile and may be affected by external factors such as financial, regulatory or political events. Trading on margin increases the financial risks.
Before deciding to trade in financial instrument or cryptocurrencies you should be fully informed of the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite, and seek professional advice where needed.
Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. The data and prices on the website are not necessarily provided by any market or exchange, but may be provided by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual price at any given market, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Fusion Media and any provider of the data contained in this website will not accept liability for any loss or damage as a result of your trading, or your reliance on the information contained within this website.
It is prohibited to use, store, reproduce, display, modify, transmit or distribute the data contained in this website without the explicit prior written permission of Fusion Media and/or the data provider. All intellectual property rights are reserved by the providers and/or the exchange providing the data contained in this website.
Fusion Media may be compensated by the advertisers that appear on the website, based on your interaction with the advertisements or advertisers.
© 2007-2024 - Fusion Media Limited. All Rights Reserved.