By Barani Krishnan
Investing.com - Gold had its worst day and week in almost two months, crumbling to $1,750 lows, as the dollar sprung back from a recent spate of selling amid a resilient U.S. jobs report that again raised questions about the stimulus provided by the Federal Reserve to markets and the economy.
“It’s the vengeful dollar,” said Philip Streible, precious metals strategist for Blueline Futures in Chicago. “DX is coming back in a way that’s delivering an excruciating blow to most commodities today.”
DX, the trading symbol for the Dollar Index, was up 0.6% at 92.81 by 1:30 PM ET (17:30 GMT) as gold futures on New York’s Comex settled. It hit a near two-week high at 92.85 earlier, after tumbling to a one-month low of 91.82 earlier in the week.
Gold’s front-month gold on Comex settled down $43.40, or 2.5%, at $1,763.10 an ounce. For the week, it fell 3%.
Gold, a hedge against economic and political troubles as well as inflation, got a break just last week when Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the central bank wasn’t ready to raise U.S. interest rates yet as it was still focused on supporting a nation recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.
Powell also refused to go near any talk of when the Fed might consider tapering the combined $120 billion the Fed was plonking each month into Treasury bonds and agency mortgage‑backed securities.
Getting toward the Fed’s twin mandates of maximum employment for Americans and sustainable inflation were the goals, he reasoned.
The Fed’s lower-for-longer rates and indefinite stimulus for now might, however, be debated again after the U.S. July jobs report issued on Friday cited the creation of 943,000 new jobs that brought unemployment down to 5.4%. Economists tracked by Investing.com had projected just 870,000 new jobs for July, and a jobless rate of 5.7%.
Since January, gold has been on a tough ride that began in August last year — when it came off record highs above $2,000 and meandered for a few months before stumbling into a systemic decay from November, when the first breakthroughs in Covid-19 vaccine efficiencies were announced. At one point, gold raked a near 11-month bottom at under $1,674.
After appearing to break that dark spell with a bounce back to $1,905 in May, gold saw a new round of short-selling that took it back and forth between $1,700 and $1,800.
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