Gold hits record high on Fed rate-cut hopes

Gold surged to an all-time high, boosted by increasing optimism the Federal Reserve will start easing monetary policy this year along with rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East.

Bullion jumped as much as 1,1 percent to hit US$2 440.59 an ounce in early Asian hours, surpassing a previous intraday record reached in April. Traders have been boosting bets in recent sessions that the Federal Reserve could reduce borrowing costs as early as September, a scenario that would bolster gold as it doesn’t pay interest.

Last week, the US dollar fell and Treasuries rallied after data released on Wednesday showed inflation in April eased more than expected. That offered support for the precious metal, which is priced in the greenback.

The metal’s haven status was in the spotlight on Monday after a helicopter carrying Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi crashed in dense fog on Sunday. The news added to a sense of rising geopolitical risks across the region, after a China-bound oil tanker was hit by a Houthi missile in the Red Sea on Saturday.

“Gold’s rally is news-driven with uncertainty about what happened in Iran,” said Nicholas Frappell, global head of institutional markets at ABC Refinery in Sydney. “There is bound to an element of jumping to conclusions on the basis of very little information,” he said, adding “investors are likely reluctant to fade positions given lower levels of liquidity in Asia.”

Hedge funds trading Comex futures boosted bullish bets on gold to a three-week high in the week ending May 14, according to the latest data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Spot gold rose 0,8 percent to US$2 434.19 an ounce as of 10:13 a.m. in Singapore. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was flat, following a 0,7 percent decline last week to its weakest in more than a month. Silver, palladium and platinum all climbed. -Bloomberg



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