Gold price consolidates around 50-day SMA, downside seems cushioned amid sliding US bond yields

  • Gold price reverses an intraday dip on Monday amid subdued US Dollar price action. 
  • Retreating US bond yields weighs on the USD and lends support amid geopolitical risks. 
  • Hawkish Fed expectations keep a lid on any further gains for the non-yielding metal.

Gold price (XAU/USD) attracts some dip-buying during the early part of the European session, albeit lacks follow-through and remains below a two-week high touched on Friday. The FOMC meeting minutes released last week, along with hawkish remarks by several Federal Reserve (Fed) officials, reaffirmed market bets that the US central bank will keep interest rates higher for longer. This, in turn, is seen as a key factor acting as a headwind for the non-yielding yellow metal.

Meanwhile, the US Dollar (USD) struggles to capitalize on its bounce from a nearly three-week low touched last Thursday amid retreating US Treasury bond yields and continues to act as a tailwind for the Gold price. Apart from this, the risk of a further escalation of military action in the Middle East, along with the prolonged Russia-Ukraine war, offers additional support to the safe-haven precious metal. This, in turn, should help limit any corrective decline for the XAU/USD. 

Daily Digest Market Movers: Gold price struggles to attract any meaningful buyers amid Fed rate cut jitters

  • The US Dollar registered its first weekly decline for 2024, which, along with increasing demand for traditional safe-haven assets, lifted the Gold price to over a two-week high on Friday.
  • The growing conviction that the Federal Reserve will wait until the June policy meeting before cutting interest rates keeps a lid on any further appreciating move for the non-yielding yellow metal.
  • The January FOMC meeting minutes released last week revealed that policymakers generally agreed that they needed greater confidence in falling inflation before considering cutting rates.
  • Adding to this, a number of prominent Fed officials recently suggested that imminent interest rate cuts are unlikely as the central bank aims to bring inflation back to the 2% annual target.
  • The US Treasury bond yields retreated from a fresh YTD peak touched last week, though remain well supported by the Fed’s hawkish outlook and continue to act as a tailwind for the US Dollar.
  • Investors, meanwhile, remain concerned about geopolitical risks stemming from conflicts in the Middle East and the Russia-Ukraine war, which could lend some support to the safe-haven XAU/USD.
  • Israel expressed its intentions to expand its operations to destroy Hamas amid the uncertainty over a ceasefire, while Russia is preparing a new offensive against Ukraine starting in late May or summer.
  • US and UK fighter planes carried out strikes on Houthi sites in Yemen on Saturday amid sustained attacks by the Iran-backed Houthi rebels on commercial vessels in the important Red Sea trade route.
  • Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Sunday that Russia is preparing a new offensive against the country starting in late May or summer and Kyiv has a clear battlefield plan of its own.
  • Investors now await this week’s key US macro data, including the Core PCE Price Index, for clues about the Fed’s future policy decision before placing fresh directional bets around the commodity.

Technical Analysis: Gold price remains confined in range around 50-day SMA, bullish potential seems intact

From a technical perspective, failure to find acceptance above the 50-day SMA and a modest pullback from the $2,041-2,042 intermediate hurdle warrants some caution for bullish traders. That said, oscillators on the daily chart have just started gaining positive traction and support prospects for additional near-term gains. Hence, any subsequent decline is more likely to attract fresh buyers near the $2,024 horizontal support.

A convincing break below, however, will expose the 100-day SMA, currently pegged near the $2,007 area. This is followed by the $2,000 psychological mark, which if broken decisively might shift the bias in favour of bearish traders. The Gold price might then accelerate the slide towards the $1,984 region before eventually dropping to the very important 200-day SMA support near the $1,967-1,966 zone.

On the flip side, bulls need to wait for a move beyond Friday’s swing high, around the $2,041-2,042 area, before placing fresh bets. The Gold price might then aim to challenge the next relevant hurdle near the $2,065 supply zone. Some follow-through buying will set the stage for a move towards reclaiming the $2,100 round figure mark for the first time since early December 2023.