Gold prices attempt 2nd day of gains after sharpest quarterly drop in 7 years

Gold prices attempt 2nd day of gains after sharpest quarterly drop in 7 years

Gold futures were rising Thursday morning, supported by a retreat in bond yields and a weakness in the U.S. dollar, a day after the precious metal put in the worst quarterly loss since 2016.

Front-month April gold contract

 was up $10, or 0.6%, at $1,725.60 an ounce, after a 1.8% gain on Wednesday.

June gold 
 which is now the most active, rose $9.60, or 0.6%, to $1,725.20 an ounce, after a 1.8% gain a day ago.

The move for gold comes as the 10-year Treasury note yield

was retreating below 1.7% and the dollar

was pulling back from its recent rise. Softness in the U.S.-dollar can make assets priced in the currency more appealing to overseas buyers and a pull back in bond yields can lower the opportunity costs of investing in precious metals, which don’t offer a coupon, against risk-free government debt.

Some experts speculated that a combination of unwinding of bearish bullion bets and buying at the end of March, as well as rebalancing following the first three months of 2021 might be helping to give a lift to beleaguered precious metals.

“Quarter-end rebalancing and short covering may be helping the precious metal recoup some losses after what was a terrible quarter,” wrote Raffi Boyadjian, senior investment analyst at XM.

Meanwhile, commodity traders were parsing, initial jobless claims which rose 61,000 to 719,000, compared against estimates for a gain of 675,000 and last week’s 658,000 figure, which was lowered.

Investors are still breaking down the details of President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan, and assess the likelihood of the bills passing through Congress, which would affect the outlook for gold as market participants assess the prospects of the impact of further fiscal stimulus and tax hikes on the economy.

See: Biden rolls out $2.3 trillion infrastructure plan: ‘It’s bold, yes, and we can get it done’

Thus far, a buoyant economic data, fiscal stimulus and positive vaccine developments have weighed on gold prices, undercutting their haven appeal.

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