Gold firms as stocks point lower, but metal is still pinned below $1,300

Gold futures moved modestly higher Wednesday, but remained below the psychologically significant price of $1,300, as stock indicators again flashed red.

June gold GCM9, +0.34% was up $1.90, or 0.1%, at $1,298.10 an ounce.

The SPDR Gold Shares ETF GLD, -0.17% was up 0.1% and the gold-miners focused exchange-traded VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF GDX, -0.43% rose 0.1%.

July silver SIN9, +0.05% was little changed, up less than 0.1%, at $14.82 an ounce.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.82% and the S&P 500 index SPX, +0.80%finished sharply higher in Tuesday dealings, depressing gold’s price in that session, as volatility persists after a trade war-related drubbing for equities to start the week. The ICE U.S. Dollar IndexDXY, +0.14% was up 0.1% early Wednesday.

U.S. stocks, which tend to rise as gold falls, were pointing to a lower start Wednesday as caution around a U.S.-China trade spat and looming retail sales data kept bullish sentiment in check. Separate data out of China showed its industrial output slowed sharply from 8.5% to 5.4% year-over-year in April, while retail sales grew at the weakest rate in 16 years. The data highlighted the tensions around the trade talks but also rekindled fresh talk that China could keep up economic stimulus.

“The immediate market fear over the escalation in the trade dispute seems to be calming down once more. Donald Trump has been upbeat over the prospects of an agreement. it is just that is may take a few weeks to know,” said Richard Perry, analyst at Hantec Markets. “Trump says three or four weeks, but with the G-20 summit at the end of June, where he and President Xi are sure to meet, it could be longer. For now, markets look subdued, like an injured animal licking its wounds.”

For gold bulls, Perry says, holding $1,289/$1,291 and breaking back above resistance at $1303 is now key.

Elsewhere on Comex, July platinum PLN9, -1.02% fell $5.70, or 0.7%, to $853.40 an ounce, while June palladiumPAM9, -1.84% gave up $19.70, or 1.5%, to $1,313.40 an ounce.

Meanwhile, July copper HGN9, -0.11% which has been sensitive to the Sino-American trade tensions, fell 0.1%, to $2.7225 a pound. Trade jitters between the world’s largest economies has the potential to hurt demand for the industrial metal.

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