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Markets

Gold, silver ease as dollar holds firm near 2-month peak

  • Spot gold dropped 0.6% to $1,822.01 per ounce by 0330 GMT. US gold futures fell 0.6% to $1,823.90.
Published February 4, 2021

Gold and silver prices fell on Thursday as a firmer dollar dented their appeal, while investors look forward to the passage of a massive stimulus package in the United States and the Bank of England's interest rate decision.

Spot gold dropped 0.6% to $1,822.01 per ounce by 0330 GMT. US gold futures fell 0.6% to $1,823.90.

Spot silver declined 1.3% to $26.51. Prices have eased since hitting a near eight-year peak of $30.03 on Monday as the social media-driven rally fizzled out.

"The major driver across precious metals is the strengthening of dollar. The moves in silver have been largely speculation and it's becoming apparent that does not have a lasting effect," said Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets. The dollar

hovered close to a two-month peak it hit on Wednesday, while benchmark 10-year Treasury yields rose to its highest in over three weeks.

"The rise in yields is telling us the central banks are working on how they will lift the interest rates and withdraw stimulus rather than the other way round," McCarthy said.

Gold benefits from an easy monetary policy as it weighs on government bond yields.

A recent surge in crypto currencies has also stolen some shine from gold.

Investors now await the Bank of England policy decision due at 1200 GMT.

"The biggest risk to gold is stronger recovery as vaccines rollout, to the extent that we see US bond yields rally," said Lachlan Shaw, National Australia Bank's head of commodity research.

"Having said that, if the vaccine rollout faces uncertainty, with these new emerging strains, that can still be supportive for gold."

Platinum fell 1.4% at $1,085.62 an ounce and palladium lost 1.1% to $2,250.06.

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