Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:38pm EDT
* Gold up following two days of losses on Fed outlook
* Rally in crude oil, dollar’s drop help
By Frank Tang
NEW YORK, July 19 (Reuters) – Gold rose 1 percent on Thursday after two days of losses, lifted by a drop in the
dollar and a rally by crude oil amid increasing geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. Data showing a surge in U.S. jobless claims and weaker factory activity in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region improved the outlook for additional economic stimulus from the Federal Reserve and boosted bullion’s investment appeal. Bullion, a traditional inflation hedge, has retreated from levels seen earlier this year due to a lack of more-concrete measures by the U.S. central bank to stimulate a slowing economy. This week, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke again gave no hint of any new round of asset buybacks, or quantitative easing (QE).
“The underlying fundamental story why gold was moving sideways in the past three months is that investors are just not clear whether or not we are going to see another round of quantitative easing from the Fed,” said Adam Sarhan, CEO of New York-based Sarhan Capital.
“If we do see more QE, I have to say gold can easily get a bid and shoot right back up to this year’s high at $1,800 in a heartbeat,” Sarhan said.
Spot gold was up 1 percent for the day at $1,587.36 an ounce by 11:53 a.m. EDT (1553 GMT).
Gold’s rally on Thursday also brightened its technical outlook as prices have now risen above their 20- and 50-day moving averages (DMA).
However, gold will stay rangebound unless the metal breaks above resistance at $1,655 — its 200-DMA and two-month high, or falls below $1,523 — a one-year low, Sarhan said.
Gold drew support from a 3 percent surge in oil as the killing of Syrian security chiefs on Wednesday, and an attack on Israeli tourists in Bulgaria, which Israel accused Iran of carrying out, worsened the crisis in the Middle East. U.S. gold futures for August delivery were up $16.50 at $1,587.30 an ounce, with trading volume weaker than normal, preliminary Reuters data showed.
Silver gained 0.7 percent to $27.34 an ounce. Spot platinum was up 0.9 percent at $1,412.25 an ounce, while spot palladium rose 1.7 percent at $580.75 an ounce.
Prices at 11:53 a.m. EDT (1553 GMT)
LAST NET PCT YTD
CHG CHG CHG
US gold 1587.30 16.50 1.1% 1.3%
US silver 27.325 0.230 0.9% -2.1%
US platinum 1418.80 14.60 1.0% 1.4%
US palladium 583.60 6.05 1.1% -11.1%
Gold 1587.36 15.07 1.0% 1.5%
Silver 27.34 0.20 0.7% -1.3%
Platinum 1412.25 12.05 0.9% 1.4%
Palladium 580.75 9.67 1.7% -11.0%
Gold Fix 1584.00 4.00 0.3% 0.6%
Silver Fix 27.45 42.00 1.6% -2.6%
Platinum Fix 1415.00 2.00 0.1% 2.5%
Palladium Fix 581.00 1.00 0.2% -8.6%
(Additional reporting by Harpreet Bhal and Jan Harvey in
London; Editing by Dale Hudson)