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Old 18-05-2023, 16:14
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Default Re: Daily Market Analysis by ForexMart

Gold stumbles due to Fed rate hike expectations

Gold exhibited mixed performance this week, rising strongly and then pulling back from recent peaks. Analysts believe that gold's rally is currently on hiatus, and that the precious metal is ready to move in a different direction. Uncertainty surrounding the Federal Reserve's interest rate trajector is contributing to gold's slowed momentum.

At the start of the week, gold marginally increased, but gave up part of its gains and slipped by 0.80%. This was due to ambiguous macroeconomic data from the US, which nonetheless showed signs of resilience. US retail sales were also notably robust. According to current data, industrial production in America bounced back in April, while the manufacturing sector is facing difficulties.

Retail sales excluding autos went up by 0.4% m/m, which matched forecasts. Year-over-year, sales rose by 1.6%, below last month's 2.4%. Experts believe it indicates that the US economy is slowing down.

US industrial production grew by 0.5% m/m in April. Year-on-year, it rose to 0.2% from 0.1% in the previous months. According to the latest data, manufacturing production increased by 1% m/m. Furthermore, an uptick in automobile production was observed, bolstering the US dollar and dampening gold's upside prospects.

Macroeconomic factors and higher US government bond yields have weighted down on the precious metal. Consequently, gold has slightly declined. Its downward movement has accelerated by week's end. The precious metal has now bounced downwards from the key level of $2,000 per ounce. On Thursday morning, 18 May, XAU/USD was trading at $1,977, trying to recoup losses, but with limited success.

As the precious metal slides down, investors are now focused on new US data, which is set to be published later today. The next batch of data will help investors assess the state of the US economy and predict the Fed's next interest rate move. In addition, the US Department of Labor will release the initial unemployment claims report. Preliminary forecasts indicate that jobless claims fell by 10,000 in the first week of May after rising by 22,000 earlier, reaching its highest level since October 2021.

Uncertainty regarding the US debt ceiling is another important factor for gold. Continuing discussions on the issue has yet to find a solution. Earlier, US President Joe Biden met with Congress representatives to address the issue. Analysts estimate the current situation has pushed up the precious metal, which benefits from anxiety in the market. Gold is universally considered to be a traditional safe-haven asset that can protect the holder's capital.

Higher industrial production in the US has boosted the market. As a result, traders and investors are pricing in the possibility of another interest rate hike in mid-June. Analysts suggest that the change in market expectations has triggered another dollar movement, weighing down on gold.

Gold's noticeable decline has been attributed not only to the mixed US macroeconomic data, but also to the Federal Reserve's current decisions on interest rates. As a result, the precious metal is approaching its April lows. Analysts believe that due to increased expectations of another key rate hike, the gold correction will continue.

At the moment, Fed representatives maintain a hawkish stance, believing that this approach would make it easier to bring inflation under control and return it to the target of 2% in the future. This also affects possible upcoming rate moves. According to Fed officials, the rate has not yet reached a level that would allow a rollback of policy tightening.

In this situation, the precious metal is stalling, but some analysts are confident that it could increase. Currency strategists at Credit Suisse believe that gold will eventually reach new highs and rise above the $2,070-$2,075 levels achieved in 2020 and 2022.

According to Credit Suisse, the gold market will soar to new highs following the completion of the current range phase, facilitated by a decrease in real yields in the US. In this situation, exceeding $2,075 would indicate a bullish breakout, opening the way to a new target range of $2,330-$2,360.

Technical analysis indicates that gold is approaching the 50-day moving average. Experts say that stabilizing above this level solidified the gold rally at the end of 2022 and confirmed it in March 2023. At the same time, the 61.8% retracement level, which moved from March lows to early May highs, is located at $1,977 per ounce.

Experts estimate that gold should avoid a sharp drop below $1,980. Such a scenario would be an important signal of market sentiment change, pushing gold down to a critical level of $1,950 per ounce.

If gold stabilizes near current levels, then the next growth impulse will help it refresh historical highs. In this situation, the technical target for gold bulls will be $2,250, which was reached during the last two-month rally. The long-term target will be the ambitious level of $2,640, which may be reached within 12 months.

Experts believe the correction of the precious metal will continue if the likelihood of another Fed rate hike increases in June. The regulator's next meeting is scheduled for June 13-14. Most analysts (72%) expect the key rate to remain at 5%-5.25%, while some anticipate another increase by 25 basis points.
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