Gold Futures Settle Lower

Gold futures settled lower on Thursday as traders chose to pick up riskier assets such as equities amid rising optimism about strong economic recovery.

The dollar’s recovery from earlier lows weighed as well on bullion prices. The dollar index, which dropped to 91.66 in the European session, recovered to 91.91 subsequently before paring gains, dropping to 91.81.

Investors appeared confused about the Federal Reserve’s future policy stance after Fed officials came out with mixed views on inflation and the rate outlook.

Both Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic and Fed Governor Michelle Bowman said that recent price increases are likely to be temporary, but it may take longer than anticipated to fade. Bostic projected a rate hike in late 2022, citing faster growth and higher inflation.

Separately, Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan said that the economy will likely meet the Fed’s requirements for stimulus withdrawal sooner than thought.

Gold futures for August ended down by $6.70 or about 0.4% at $1,776.70 an ounce. Gold futures had ended with a modest gain of about 0.3% on Wednesday.

Silver futures for July ended lower by $0.061 or about 0.2% at $26.050 an ounce, while Copper futures for July settled at $4.3110 per pound, down $0.0195 or 0.5% from the previous close.

A report released by the Labor Department said initial jobless claims edged down to 411,000 in the week ended June 19th, a decrease of 7,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 418,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to drop to 380,000 from the 412,000 originally reported for the previous week.

The Commerce Department released a report showing the pace of U.S. economic growth in the first quarter of 2021 was unrevised from the previous estimate.

The report said real gross domestic product spiked by 6.4% in the first quarter, matching the estimate provided last month as well as economist estimates.

The Bank of England today kept its key interest rate and quantitative easing unchanged, as widely expected. The nine-member Monetary Policy Committee headed by Andrew Bailey unanimously decided to hold the benchmark rate at a record low of 0.1%.

The central bank retained the existing stock of corporate bond purchases at GBP 20 billion and the government bond purchases at GBP 875 billion, taking the size of total quantitative easing to GBP 895 billion.

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