Gold price dips as US-China trade war fears props up dollar

October 30, 2018

London (Oct 30)  Gold prices edged lower on Tuesday as the US dollar firmed on renewed fears of an intensification in the Sino-US trade war and worries over slowing global economic growth.

Investors took cover in the greenback after Bloomberg reported that Washington is preparing to announce tariffs on all remaining Chinese imports by early December if talks next month between US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping fail to ease the trade war.

A stronger dollar makes bullion more expensive for holders of other currencies.

Spot gold was down 0.2 percent at $1,227.17 an ounce at 0657 GMT. US gold futures were up 0.1 percent at $1,228.90 an ounce.

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"There is a little bit of pressure from the dollar for now. But, overall gold prices look fundamentally supported. Market sentiment is still very cautious. We feel upside potential for gold at $1,255 is highly possible," said Benjamin Lu, a commodities analyst with Phillip Futures.

"Gold prices have started seeing some strength, unlike the previous two quarters, from geo-political factors. Dollar is still very strong and may limit the upside in gold prices. But it doesn't look like gold will lose steam due to the dollar vigour for now."

Gold prices have gained about 6 percent since declining to $1,159.96 an ounce in mid-August, the lowest since January 2017. Choppy sessions in global equity markets last week pushed gold to $1,243.32, its highest since July 17 on Friday.

However, the yellow metal is still down about 10 percent from its April peak after investors turned to the dollar as a safe-haven as the US-China trade war unfolded against a background of higher US interest rates.

"The rally in gold seems to be exhausted near the level of $1,240. To break this level, it really needs big triggers," said Vandana Bharti, assistant vice president of commodity research at SMC Comtrade Ltd.

"It was a correction in the equity markets that provided the recent upside in gold. If equity markets tumble further, which we expect due to trade war and other issues, then we may see fresh buying in gold."

Asia shares recouped early losses and crept higher as China made a fresh attempt to stabilise its stock markets, but the gains looked fragile.

Spot gold may test a support at $1,217 per ounce, a break below which could cause a loss to the next support at $1,208, said Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

Holdings in SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, rose 0.7 percent to 24.27 million ounces on Monday, the highest in nearly two months.

Meanwhile, silver rose 0.1 percent to $14.47 per ounce, after touching an over two-week low of $14.38 in the previous session.

Platinum rose 0.1 percent at $833.20 per ounce and palladium climbed 0.5 percent to $1,093.40 per ounce.


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