NEW YORK: Gold scaled a more than one-month peak on Thursday as US Treasury yields slipped despite better-than-expected US economic data, pushing investors to bullion as a refuge against possible inflation ahead.
Spot gold rose 1.8% to $1,766.50 per ounce by 1:49 p.m. EDT (1749 GMT), having earlier risen to $1,769.37, its highest since Feb. 26. US gold futures settled 1.8% higher at $1,766.80.
“A massive amount of inflation is certainly on the horizon and gold is just the best asset to own as we start to see what I would consider some historic levels of inflation,” said Jeffrey Sica, founder of Circle Squared Alternative Investments.
Making gold more appealing for holders of other currencies, the dollar was subdued, having earlier slumped to a four-week low. Retreating benchmark 10-year US Treasury yields boosted non-yielding bullion’s appeal further.
Gold briefly pared gains after robust US data showed a better-than-expected rebound in retail sales in March, while weekly initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped to the lowest level since mid-March 2020.
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said on Wednesday the US economy picked up speed going into the spring.
Powell and other Fed officials, however, say the brighter economic forecasts and a brief period of higher inflation will not affect monetary policy and the central bank will keep its support in place until the crisis is over.
“The market is betting that there will be large requirements to fund some higher inflation and a Federal Reserve that’s not particularly worried about inflation being a serious issue for now,” said Bart Melek, head of commodity strategies at TD Securities.
Silver rose 1.8% to $25.86 per ounce. Palladium climbed 2.1% to $2,733.75, having earlier hit its highest since Feb. 28, 2020 at $2,760.53. Platinum gained 2.3% to $1,197.91.