Gold hovers above US$1,800 as early taper expectations cool

Gold hovers above US$1,800 as early taper expectations cool
-A +A

BENGALURU (Aug 24): Gold prices fell slightly on Tuesday, although they hovered above the key psychological level of $1,800 on expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve might delay cutting back its stimulus amid rising cases of the Delta coronavirus variant.

Spot gold eased 0.2% to $1,801.78 per ounce by 0100 GMT, having jumped about 1.4% in the previous session.

U.S. gold futures were little changed at $1,804.90.

The dollar index clawed higher after falling about 0.6% on Monday.

Data from IHS Markit showed U.S. business activity growth slowed for a third straight month in August as capacity constraints, supply shortages and the rapidly spreading Delta variant weakened the momentum of the rebound from last year's pandemic-induced recession.

Investors are now focused on Fed Chair Jerome Powell's speech at the annual Jackson Hole, Wyoming, symposium awaiting guidance on the U.S. central bank's taper plans.

Britain's post-lockdown economic rebound slowed sharply in August as companies struggled with unprecedented shortages of staff and materials, though strong inflation pressures cooled a bit, a survey showed on Monday.

SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its holdings fell 0.5% to 1,006.66 tonnes on Monday from 1,011.61 tonnes on Friday.

Silver fell 0.5% to $23.54 per ounce, while platinum edged 0.3% higher to $1,015.92.

Palladium was steady at $2,401.13, having risen 5.5% in the previous session.