As of 1:30 p.m. EST Friday the yellow metal was changing hands at $15.54. Silver and copper also took hits this week, while oil prices were up Friday.
The gold price took a hit this week after the US Federal Reserve elected not to raise interest rates, but indicated that an increase may still occur before the end of the year.
The central bank made the decision at its latest two-day policy meeting, held from October 27 to 28. While gold had been trading at about $1,176 per ounce before the Fed’s news hit at 2:00 p.m. EST, within two minutes it had fallen to $1,167.65. It continued to sink from there.
Explaining gold’s big drop, Reuters said that “[r]ising interest rates tend to weigh on gold because they lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion while boosting the dollar, in which it is priced.”
“The market was clearly anticipating kicking rate rises into the long grass, and of course a December rate rise is still very much on the cards,” Jonathan Butler, a Mitsubishi analyst, told the news outlet. He added, “[t]he correction was a perfectly natural response to that. (But) it’s interesting that we’ve only traced back to where we were in early October. There may be further pain to come as the Fed’s intentions becomes clearer, but with yields having moved higher, probably the worst is over in the very short term.”
As of 1:30 p.m. EST on Friday, the yellow metal was trading at $1,140.85, on track for its largest drop in nine weeks.
For its part, silver largely followed the gold price this week. It rose as high as $16.34 per ounce prior to the Fed’s announcement, then dropped to $15.88 just after. As of 1:30 p.m. EST Friday it was changing hands at $15.54.
On the base metals side, COMEX copper for December delivery was down 0.5 percent on Friday, at $2.3105 per pound. According to The Wall Street Journal, the metal is being hurt by concerns about global demand, especially out of China, and US interest rates.
Expressing that sentiment, Charles Nedoss, senior market strategist at LaSalle Futures, told the publication, “China has as much copper as they need right now and if they’re slowing they’re not going to be really using it.”
Finally, drillers removed 16 oil rigs this week, taking the total rig count down to 578, the lowest since June 2010; however, as yet that’s failed to impact prices. Brent crude was up $0.73, at $49.53 per barrel, as of 1:22 p.m. EST, while US crude was up $0.49, at $46.55 per barrel, Reuters states.
Securities Disclosure: I, Charlotte McLeod, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
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