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Metals Stocks: Gold gets a lift as global stocks take a hit

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Gold futures drew some haven bids early Thursday as investors reacted to minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee on Wednesday that showed that monetary policy makers were on track to begin unwinding parts of their easy-money programs later this year.

Minutes from the Fed’s July 27-28 meeting, underscored recent reports that point to a growing desire to roll back monthly buying of $120 billion in Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities, which may be viewed as a negative for bullion, but was also weighing on bullish sentiment in risk assets and underpinning gold purchases.

On Thursday, December gold
GCZ21,
+0.19%

GC00,
+0.19%

was trading $5.90, or 0.3%, higher at $1,790.30 an ounce, after settling 0.2% lower on Wednesday.

Gains for gold come as U.S. stock-index futures
YM00,
-0.92%

were pointing to sharp declines for the Dow Jones Industrial Average
DJIA,
-1.08%
,
the S&P 500 index
SPX,
-1.07%

and the Nasdaq Composite Index
COMP,
-0.89%
.

Concerns about the spread of the highly transmissible delta variant of COVID-19 also was pressuring stocks lower as a study from the University of Oxford based on real-world data, showed diminished effectiveness from coronavirus vaccines to the delta variant. 

Trading in gold, however, was being checked by strength in the U.S. dollar, up 0.2%, as measured by the ICE U.S. Dollar Index
DXY,
+0.24%
.
A stronger dollar can weigh on appetite for assets priced in the currency like gold.

“Gold was caught between two major forces, with the impact of stronger dollar being offset by haven demand,” wrote Fawad Razaqzada, market analyst at ThinkMarkets, in a research note.

Meanwhile, the 10-year Treasury note yield
TMUBMUSD10Y,
1.230%

was at 1.22%, down 5 basis points, highlighting a rush to asset perceived as safe and helping to buoy gold prices because lower yields can help bolster demand for nonyielding metals.

Carlo Alberto De Casa, market analyst at Kinesis, said “$1,790 remains a key resistance zone” for gold.

“A clear surpass of this mark will put gold back in the former trading range of $1,790—1,820, which contained prices for weeks earlier in July,” the analyst wrote.

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