Gold prices steady as dollar hovers below 2018-peak

BENGALURU: Gold prices were mostly steady on Thursday after touching their lowest level this year in the previous session, with the US dollar hovering below its 2018-peak.


Spot gold was nearly unchanged at $ 1,290.64 per ounce at 0038 GMT, after marking its lowest since Dec. 27 in the previous session at $ 1,286.20.

US gold futures for June delivery were down 0.1 per cent at $ 1,290.10 per ounce.

The dollar index , which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, eased 0.1 per cent to 93.315, after hitting the highest level for the year in the last session.

US President Donald Trump acknowledged on Wednesday it was unclear if his summit with North Korea would go ahead after Pyongyang threatened to pull out of the unprecedented meeting, a move that could deny him a potentially major foreign policy achievement.

The United States and China launch trade talks on Thursday in a bid to avert a damaging tariff war, with the White House’s harshest China critic relegated to a supporting role, senior Trump administration officials said on Wednesday.

The United States and Gulf partners imposed additional sanctions on Lebanon’s Hezbollah leadership on Wednesday, targeting its top two officials, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and Naim Qassem.

European leaders sought unity on Wednesday towards threatened US import tariffs on steel and aluminium, balancing the views of those most fearful of a trade war and those determined not to be bullied into concessions.

Germany’s Angela Merkel on Wednesday defended the Iran nuclear deal following its rejection by Washington, arguing the pact is the best way to tackle concerns about Tehran’s role in Syria and its ballistic missile programme.

US industrial production increased solidly in April amid an acceleration in manufacturing and mining output, the latest indication that the economy was gathering momentum early in the second quarter.

St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President James Bullard on Wednesday said he believes the Fed’s policy rate is “pretty close” to neutral, and that further rate hikes would act to slow economic growth and push downward on inflation.

There is “a lot of support” among US policymakers to review the central bank’s inflation target, even though the process may well lead to little change in the Fed’s current approach, Bullard said.