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Gold Extends Drop as Surge in Treasury Yields Weighs on Demand

CommoditiesMar 19, 2021 02:00
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(Bloomberg) -- Gold fell a second day as bond yields surged, with some investors shrugging off the Federal Reserve’s dovish message and betting that the central bank will allow inflation to overshoot amid an economic rebound.

On Thursday, yields on benchmark 10-year Treasuries climbed as much as 11 basis points to 1.75% -- the highest since January 2020 -- while the 30-year jumped to 2.5% for the first time since August 2019. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s willingness to let the economy run hotter with central bank support has boosted expectations for faster inflation. He also indicated he wasn’t concerned over the recent jump in long-term yields, with his focus still on whether financial conditions remained accommodative.

The rise in bond yields has weighed on demand for bullion which doesn’t offer interest, although its role as a hedge against inflation has helped provide some support to prices. During his press conference after the Fed’s meeting this week, Powell said that the price increases this year are likely to be transient and won’t be seen as progress toward the central bank’s long-term goals.

“Powell didn’t say enough to calm the bond market yet, but he has a few speeches coming up soon which could see a change of tone,” John Feeney, business development manager at Sydney-based bullion dealer Guardian Gold Australia. “Gold investors are too fixated on bond yields right now, and ignoring the fact that gold can still rise in environments where bond yields and interest rates rise, as long as we see inflation.”

Spot gold fell 0.4% to $1,730.06 an ounce by 9:11 a.m. in Singapore, after dropping 0.5% on Thursday. Silver and platinum both retreated. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was flat after climbing 0.5% on Thursday.

On Friday, investor focus will be on the Bank of Japan which is expected to tweak its bond yield management and asset purchases after a policy review. Markets will also be monitoring the first high-level talks between the U.S. and China since President Joe Biden took office.

Meanwhile, palladium has surged 13% this week, the most in a year, on estimates for a larger-than-expected deficit after biggest producer MMC Norilsk Nickel PJSC (OTC:NILSY) cut its 2021 output targets following flooding at its Arctic mines.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

Gold Extends Drop as Surge in Treasury Yields Weighs on Demand
 

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