News & Analyses

Gold glistens as Treasury yields falter on weakened US jobs report

  • Gold rebounds above $2,330, fueled by drop in US Treasury yields, weaker Greenback.
  • Unemployment claims increase, which pressures Fed to achieve its dual mandate goals and possibly cut rates sooner.
  • Fed officials reflect mixed views on economy’s health and monetary policy direction.

Gold price resumed its uptrend on Thursday and climbed more than 1% as US Treasury yields dropped, undermining the Greenback’s appetite. Labor market data from the United States (US) was softer, increasing the chances for a rate cut by the Federal Reserve (Fed) despite dealing with inflationary pressure.

The XAU/USD trades above the $2,330 area after bouncing off daily lows at $2,306. On Thursday, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) revealed the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits increased above estimates and the previous report, an indication the economy is losing strength. This might influence the Fed in future monetary policy decisions after acknowledging that they are focused on their dual mandate — full employment and inflation.

Meanwhile, a slew of Fed officials had crossed the newswires during the week. Meanwhile, a slew of Fed officials had crossed the newswires during the week. Recently, San Francisco Fed President Mary Daly said that lowering inflation to the Fed’s target would be a bumpy ride, adding the last three months of data, leave policymakers uncertain on the future of inflation

On Monday, Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin commented that recent data has been “disappointing,” adding that the job is not done. Elsewhere, New York Fed President John Williams noted that consumers are still spending, adding that the economy remains healthy despite growing more slowly.

On Tuesday, Neel Kashkari of the Minneapolis Fed noted that the most likely scenario is to hold interest rates where they are in 2024, adding that inflation progress has stalled. Yesterday, it was Boston Fed President Susan Collins’ turn. She stated that she’s optimistic that inflation could be brought to the 2% goal, adding that current monetary policy is well-positioned and “moderately restrictive.”

Daily digest market movers: Gold strengthens as US data increases Fed rate cut hopes

  • Gold prices fell amid lower US Treasury yields and a strong US Dollar. The US 10-year Treasury note is yielding 4.457%, down four basis points (bps) from its opening level. The US Dollar Index (DXY), which tracks the Greenback’s performance against six other currencies, dives 0.25% to 105.25.
  • US Department of Labor reported that Initial Jobless Claims for the week ending May 4 rose to 231K, exceeding the estimates of 210K and showing an increase from the previous week’s figure of 209K. The uptick in jobless claims suggests a cooling US labor market.
  • Softer-than-expected labor market figures, as shown by last month’s US employment report and unemployment claims data, may exert pressure on the Fed. Officials recognized that the risks to achieving the Fed’s dual mandate of fostering maximum employment and price stability have become more balanced over the past year.
  • Gold has advanced more than 12% so far in 2024, courtesy of expectations that major central banks will begin to reduce rates. Renewed fears that the Middle East conflict could resume between Israel and Hamas can sponsor a leg up in XAU/USD prices.
  • According to Reuters, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) continued to accumulate Gold for the 18th straight month, adding 60,000 troy ounces to its reserves amid higher prices.
  • After the data release, Fed rate cut probabilities increased from around 33 basis points (bps) to 38 bps points of rate cuts toward the end of 2024.

Technical analysis: Gold price resumes its uptrend, climbs above $2,330

Gold remains bullishly biased, even though it retreated some 6% from its all-time high of $2,431, hit on April 12. Momentum shows that buyers are gathering steam, which is visible in the Relative Strength Index (RSI) shifting bullish since the start of May.

That said, XAU/USD buyers need to clear the April 26 high, the latest cycle high at $2,352. Once surpassed, that would expose the $2,400 figure. A breach of the latter will accelerate the rally toward April’s 19 high at $2,417 before challenging the all-time high of $2,431.

Conversely, further losses are seen if Gold slides beneath the $2,300 mark. The next support would be the 50-day Simple Moving Average (SMA) at $2,249.

Fed FAQs

Monetary policy in the US is shaped by the Federal Reserve (Fed). The Fed has two mandates: to achieve price stability and foster full employment. Its primary tool to achieve these goals is by adjusting interest rates. When prices are rising too quickly and inflation is above the Fed’s 2% target, it raises interest rates, increasing borrowing costs throughout the economy. This results in a stronger US Dollar (USD) as it makes the US a more attractive place for international investors to park their money. When inflation falls below 2% or the Unemployment Rate is too high, the Fed may lower interest rates to encourage borrowing, which weighs on the Greenback.

The Federal Reserve (Fed) holds eight policy meetings a year, where the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) assesses economic conditions and makes monetary policy decisions. The FOMC is attended by twelve Fed officials – the seven members of the Board of Governors, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and four of the remaining eleven regional Reserve Bank presidents, who serve one-year terms on a rotating basis.

In extreme situations, the Federal Reserve may resort to a policy named Quantitative Easing (QE). QE is the process by which the Fed substantially increases the flow of credit in a stuck financial system. It is a non-standard policy measure used during crises or when inflation is extremely low. It was the Fed’s weapon of choice during the Great Financial Crisis in 2008. It involves the Fed printing more Dollars and using them to buy high grade bonds from financial institutions. QE usually weakens the US Dollar.

Quantitative tightening (QT) is the reverse process of QE, whereby the Federal Reserve stops buying bonds from financial institutions and does not reinvest the principal from the bonds it holds maturing, to purchase new bonds. It is usually positive for the value of the US Dollar.


Source link

News & Analyses Analyses