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    Gold price extends the range play as traders await more cues about Fed’s rate cut path

    FXStreet
    Updated Feb 8, 2024 05:47
    Mitrade

    ■   Gold price continues with its struggle to gain traction and remains confined in range.

    ■   The uncertain Fed rate cut path is holding back traders from placing directional bets.

    ■   Subdued USD demand and a positive risk tone contribute to the range bound price action.


    Gold price (XAU/USD) extends its sideways consolidative price move during the Asian session on Thursday as traders remain uncertain about the timing and the likely pace of interest rate cuts by the Federal Reserve (Fed) this year. The markets seem convinced that the US central bank will eventually start cutting interest rates in May, if not March. This keeps the US Dollar (USD) bulls on the defensive, below the highest level in almost three months touched earlier this week and acts as a tailwind for the precious metal.


    That said, a slew of influential Fed officials recently indicated that the central bank is in no hurry to start lowering borrowing costs in the wake of the resilient US economy. This remains supportive of elevated US Treasury bond yields and caps the upside for the non-yielding Gold price. Apart from this, the prevalent risk-on environment turns out to be another factor undermining the safe-haven XAU/USD. This, in turn, is holding back traders from placing aggressive directional bets and leading to subdued range bound price action.


    Daily Digest Market Movers: Gold price lacks firm near-term direction amid Fed rate cut uncertainty


    The recent hawkish remarks by several Federal Reserve officials smashed expectations for early and steep interest rate cuts in 2024, which, in turn, acts as a headwind for the non-yielding Gold price.


    Fed Chair Jerome Powell dashed any remaining hopes for a March rate cut and said on Sunday that the central bank can be "prudent" in deciding when to start easing in the wake of a strong economy.


    Fed Governor Adriana Kugler said on Wednesday that she is pleased with the great progress on inflation and added that she is optimistic that the progress will continue, though the job is not done yet.


    Kugler further added that at some point, cooling inflation and labor markets may make a rate cut appropriate, but if disinflation progress stalls, it may be appropriate to hold the policy rate steady for longer.


    Boston Fed President Susan Collins said that inflation has slowed faster than expected but added that the central bank wants more certainty before it cuts rates and the economy needs to cool a bit further.


    Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari noted that officials would like to see a few more months of inflation data before cutting rates and added that he thinks two to three cuts will be appropriate for 2024.


    The markets, however, are still pricing in five rate cuts over the course of the Fed’s seven remaining meetings this year, which keeps the US Dollar bulls on the defensive and lends support to the XAU/USD.


    The yield on the benchmark 10-year US government bond holds comfortably above the 4.0% market and should help limit any meaningful downside for the Greenback ahead of the US inflation figures next week.


    The prevalent risk-on environment might further contribute to capping the upside for the safe-haven precious metal as traders now look to the US Weekly Initial Jobless Claims for short-term opportunities.


    Technical Analysis: Gold price traders await breakout of a short-term range


    From a technical perspective, the $2,023-2,022 area is likely to protect the immediate downside ahead of the weekly low, around the $2,015 region. Some follow-through selling will expose the $2,000 psychological mark, below which the Gold price could accelerate the slide towards the 100-day Simple Moving Average (SMA), currently around the $1,986 zone. The downfall could extend further towards the very important 200-day SMA, near the $1,966-1,965 region.


    On the flip side, the overnight swing high, around the $2,044-2,045 area, or the weekly top, now seems to act as an immediate hurdle ahead of the $2,054-2,055 zone and the $2,065 region, or last week's swing high. Given that oscillators on the daily chart are holding in the positive territory, a sustained strength beyond should lift the Gold price towards the $2,078-2,079 area, or the YTD peak set in January. The subsequent move-up should allow the XAU/USD to reclaim the $2,100 mark and climb further to the next relevant hurdle near the $2,120 region.

    * The content presented above, whether from a third party or not, is considered as general advice only.  This article should not be construed as containing investment advice, investment recommendations, an offer of or solicitation for any transactions in financial instruments.

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