Gold Falls, Dollar Struggles as Outlook Improves

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Spot gold fell to new 2019 lows on Thursday after data hinted that the global economy might be in a better condition than previously expected. Gold was trading at $1,274.20 per ounce as of 1:28 p.m. HK/SIN, down 0.20 percent, but still higher than the low of $1,270.99 hit earlier in the day, the lowest price hit since December 27, 2018. The precious metal is on track for its fourth consecutive week of declines as today marks the end of the trading week in most countries due to the holiday of Good Friday tomorrow.

Gold prices were pressured by a slew of positive data out of China this week as well as solid reports from the United States, both of which sent traders away from safe-haven assets like gold. On Wednesday, the U.S. Commerce Department announced that the country’s trade deficit narrowed for the second month in a row, and that it hit an 8-month low. Still, analysts warned that whether or not the U.S. and China reach a trade deal, the country’s trade deficit is likely to remain high because Americans tend to prefer cheaper imports over more expensive, locally-produced products. Nevertheless, reducing the trade deficit was one of President Trump’s key campaign promises, and his success thus far has been received with fresh optimism, despite the lingering tensions between the U.S. and China which have the potential to complicate issues in the future.

Market Movements

The U.S. dollar was trading mostly flat on Thursday afternoon, down 0.17 percent against the Japanese yen to 111.86, but up modestly against most of its over trading partners. The dollar faced pressure from the increased risk appetite which tends to pull traders away from the currency. The euro was little changed, after gaining 0.1 percent on Wednesday, as traders waited for European PMI data that will be released later today. The common currency was last trading at $1.1298 against the dollar.

Asian indexes were trading broadly lower, following a down day on Wall Street on Wednesday. South Korea’s Kospi took the hardest hit, down 1.20 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei was down 0.76 percent. China’s benchmark indexes, the Shanghai Composite and the Shenzhen Composite were down 0.27 percent and 0.23 percent respectively.

Sara Patterson has a Master’s Degree in political science and enjoys analyzing both current events and the international markets to get a fuller perspective of the currency market. Before turning to financial writing, she taught English writing skills to high-school age students. Sara’s work has been published on various financial and Forex blogs.