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Gold steadies with cenbank rate moves in focus

by AgaBullion
Gold steadies with cenbank rate moves in focus

April 20 (Reuters) - Gold prices ticked up on Thursday, after hitting a more than two-week low in the previous session, while investors grappled with the likelihood of more interest rate hikes by central banks to contain inflationary pressures.

Spot gold was up 0.1% at $1,994.83 per ounce, as of 0555 GMT. U.S. gold futures were unchanged at $2,006.30.

The dollar index eased 0.1%. A weaker dollar makes gold less expensive for buyers holding other currencies.

New York Fed President John Williams said on Wednesday that inflation is still at problematic levels and the Fed will act to lower it.

The CME FedWatch tool shows markets pricing in an 83.7% chance of a 25 basis-point hike in May.

Rate hikes raise the opportunity cost of holding non-interest-bearing gold.

The Fed will deliver a final 25-basis-point rate increase in May and then hold rates steady for the rest of 2023, a Reuters poll showed.

"A slew of hawkish comments from the Fed, European Central Bank and Swiss National Bank combined with stubbornly high UK inflation have investors second-guessing their calls for rate cuts this year," Simpson added.

Britain's consumer price inflation stayed in the double-digit territory in March, while Euro zone inflation eased last month but underlying readings remained stubbornly high, bolstering expectations for more rate hikes from the Bank of England and the ECB.

Spot silver lost 0.2% at $25.21 per ounce, platinum slipped 0.8% to $1,081.72 and palladium dipped 0.6% to $1,607.14.

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