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Markets

Gold off 7-month low on dollar weakness, but yields weigh

  • Bitcoin hit a record high on Sunday, after scaling a market capitalisation of $1 trillion on Friday.
22 Feb 2021

Gold prices inched higher on Monday after hitting a more than seven-month low in the previous session, as support from a weaker dollar eclipsed pressure from firmer Treasury yields.

Spot gold rose 0.1% to $1,783.56 per ounce by 0304 GMT, having touched its lowest since July 2 at $1,759.29 on Friday. US gold futures gained 0.4% to $1,784.40.

"The dollar coming off is helping to negate the rise in Treasury yields," said Howie Lee, an economist at OCBC Bank.

"Gold is in a weird place while there's clearly a need for inflation hedging, firming risk sentiment has pressured gold."

The dollar eased against rivals, making gold cheaper for other currency holders, but benchmark US Treasury yields hit a near one-year high, increasing the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.

Apart from the $1.9 trillion US COVID-19 relief bill that is expected to pass by the end of the week, market participants await Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's testimony on the Semiannual Monetary Report to Congress starting Tuesday.

"The rise in yields will be the major headwind for gold for now, but if Powell hints at any dovishness or implies that current yields are too high for sustained economic recovery... then we can see gold embark on a rally again," Lee said.

Bitcoin hit a record high on Sunday, after scaling a market capitalisation of $1 trillion on Friday.

Silver gained 1.1% to $27.06 an ounce, while platinum rose 0.8% to $1,283.82.

Palladium climbed 1% to $2,400.93, having earlier hit a more than one-month high at $2,431.50.