Gold Prices Inch Higher On Dollar Weakness

New York (Dec 17)  Gold prices inched higher on Monday as the dollar weakened slightly ahead of key central bank meetings this week, with the Fed widely expected to raise its benchmark interest rates Wednesday by 25 basis points.

Spot gold rose 0.23% to USD1,239.86 per ounce after closing at its lowest level since Dec. 4 at USD1,232.39 on Friday. US gold futures were up 0.15% at USD1,243.30 per ounce.

The Federal Reserve is widely expected to raise interest rates by another quarter point, but the central bank's accompanying statement and forecasts will be closely scrutinized for clues about future rate hikes amid increasing headwinds to US growth in 2019.

Part of the dollar's weakness also stems from fears of a possible US government shutdown over security on the border with Mexico.

A quarter of US government operations could shut down Friday at midnight unless the Trump administration and Democrats agree on a new spending plan for building a proposed wall along the US-Mexican border.

"We're going to do whatever is necessary to build the border wall to stop this ongoing crisis of illegal immigration," White House Senior Adviser Stephen Miller said on Sunday.

AllianceNews

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