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Gold Prices Hold Steady Amidst Rate Uncertainty; Copper Remains Flat with China in the Spotlight

In Asian trading on Wednesday, gold prices maintained stability as market attention remained fixed on forthcoming indicators regarding U.S. inflation and interest rates. However, a somewhat cautious stance towards metal markets persisted due to a moderately hawkish sentiment on rates.

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Meanwhile, copper prices traded within a narrow range as optimism surrounding Chinese stimulus efforts tempered, while traders awaited further economic signals from the world’s leading copper importer.

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Spot gold experienced a slight decline of 0.1% to $2,358.93 per ounce, while gold futures recorded a modest uptick of 0.1% to $2,359.80 per ounce, ahead of their impending expiration this week. Despite these minor fluctuations, gold prices remained relatively stable even as the dollar and Treasury yields exhibited strength in overnight trading.

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Gold Stability Amid Interest Rate Uncertainty

While gold prices maintained their steadiness, they remained approximately $100 below the record highs reached last week. Market focus remained on forthcoming cues regarding U.S. interest rate adjustments, particularly in light of recent signals from the Federal Reserve suggesting a potential shift towards a more hawkish stance. Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari’s cautionary remarks on Tuesday underscored the uncertainty surrounding future rate hikes as a means to address persistent inflationary pressures, which could potentially dampen sentiment in metal markets. Investors are closely monitoring upcoming statements from additional Fed speakers this week, alongside the release of the Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) price index data, a key inflation metric favored by the central bank.

Platinum and Silver Performance Surpasses Gold

In contrast to gold’s relatively subdued performance, other precious metals displayed mixed trends. Platinum futures saw a marginal decline of 0.2% to $1,069.00 per ounce, while silver futures recorded a modest increase of 0.5% to $32.312 per ounce. Notably, platinum and silver have outperformed gold in recent weeks, buoyed by speculative fervor fueled by their industrial applications.

Copper Stability Amidst China’s Focus

Benchmark copper futures on the London Metal Exchange edged up by 0.6% to $10,566.50 per tonne, while one-month copper futures saw a slight dip of 0.1% to $4.8715 per pound. Both contracts maintained levels below recent record highs, reflecting a stabilization in industrial metal markets following a period of speculative activity. China, the world’s top copper importer, announced additional supportive measures for its property sector, although market participants remained cautious pending further clarity on the execution and funding of these stimulus measures. Additionally, attention is directed towards key Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) data from China, scheduled for release on Friday, which is expected to provide further insights into the economic landscape of the leading copper-consuming nation.

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