Awaiting key US data, gold likely to rule steady

Our Bureau | | Updated on: Mar 12, 2018

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Gold prices are likely to rule steady on domestic spot and futures market on Friday as the market awaits a key US data that could shed more light on how the economy is progressing.

The US non-farm payroll data, due later tonight, is keenly awaited even as other data show that jobless claims in that country fell more that what had been projected. This is seen as signs of revival in the economy.

But these statistics have been tempered by another data that showed a decline in the US export. Later in the day, more evidences could be available from Europe on the export front.

The other gold-supporting factor is the Chinese returning from their Lunar New Year holidays which could see emergence of some physical buying.

In India, currency movements will matter somewhat as a weaker rupee against the dollar will make imports of gold, crude oil and vegetable oils costlier.

Holdings in SPDR Trust, world’s biggest gold-backed exchange traded fund were unchanged at 797.05 tonnes.

Spot gold, gold futures

In early Asian trade, spot gold ruled firm at $1,257.96 an ounce and gold futures maturing for delivery in April at $1,258.20.

On NCDEX, spot gold closed marginally higher at ₹29,790 for 10 gm on Thursday.

On MCX and NCDEX, gold futures maturing for delivery in April are likely to rule below ₹28,750.

Crude Oil

Crude oil prices are set to head higher on bets that US demand will rise. Data showing fewer jobless claims will provide support, besides the cold spell in North America. Weather is expected to be colder than normal this month, giving rise to speculation that oil demand will remain high.

Brent crude March contracts were up at $107.19 a barrel and US crude at $97.88.

Oils and oilseeds

Stronger sales of soyabean by the US and threat to South American beans from dry weather are likely to keep oils and oilseeds market firm. In addition, the market is worried that the anticipated cancellation of US soyabean purchase by China isn’t happening.

USDA data showed that the US has met its soyabean export target even before half the season is through. Chicago Board of Trade soyabean for delivery in March was up at $13.25 a bushel early on Friday in Asia. Crude palm oil settled at $2,568 ringgit or $773 a tonne on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange last evening. It is set to open higher on cues from the soyabean market.

Grains complex

Corn (industrial maize) prices will come under pressure on short-covering and bets that the USDA will raise its crop forecast for this year. But higher exports by the US hold promise in the longer term.

CBOT corn contracts for delivery in March fell to $4.43 a bushel.

Wheat prices are also seen heading lower as fears from cold spell in North America abate as the snow is seen providing cover from the chill. In addition, the snow will result in better soil moisture and provide irrigation as well. The short-term concern, though, is disruption in freight due to the cold weather.

CBOT wheat contracts maturing for delivery in March fell to $5.80 a bushel.

Published on February 07, 2014
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