— Gold prices steadied after early declines on Tuesday as markets hunkered down before several upcoming cues on the U.S. economy, as well as a series of addresses from Federal Reserve officials.
While the yellow metal saw strong gains after the onset of the Israel-Hamas war pushed investors into safe havens, it reversed course this week after a stronger-than-expected U.S. inflation reading pushed up concerns over higher interest rates.
A lack of an immediate escalation in the war also dented any more near-term safe haven demand, while the found its footing near 11-month highs.
Goldâs most-active contract on New Yorkâs Comex, December, settled up $1.40, or 0.07%, at $1,935.70 an ounce, after an intraday drop toÂ 1,924.85.
The , more closely watched by some traders than futures, was at $1,924.50.65 by 15:33 ET (19:33 GMT), up $4.28, or 0.2%, on the day. The session low for spot gold was $1,912.44.
Fed comments on tapÂ
U.S. read higher-than-expected for September, data showed last week, ramping up concerns that the Fed will remain hawkish for longer, in order to bring down sticky inflation.
A string of Fed officials are also set to speak this week, most notably on Thursday. Powellâs comments will be closely watched in the wake of the strong inflation readings, given that the Fed Chair had signaled higher for longer rates at the Fedâs previous meeting.
Higher interest rates bode poorly for gold, given that they increase the opportunity cost of investing in the yellow metal. This trade battered gold through the past year, and is expected to limit any major gains until the Fed starts cutting interest rates.Â
Copper slides, China GDP in focusÂ
Among industrial metals, copper prices reversed recent gains on Tuesday, as markets hunkered down before key Chinese economic readings this week.
closed New York trading down 0.1% at $3.5820 a pound.Â
Third-quarter Chinese data, due on Wednesday, is expected to show further deterioration in growth in the worldâs largest copper importer.
data for September- also due on Wednesday- is expected to show continued weakness in the sector, which accounts for a bulk of Chinese copper demand.
Still, copper bulls took some encouragement from figures from major miner Rio Tinto Ltd (ASX:). The miner clocked slightly stronger iron ore and copper shipments on steady demand in China.
(Barani Krishnan contributed to this article)