Gold prices held firm on Monday, despite a rise in the dollar to session highs, as markets priced in the increased possibility the U.S. central bank would raise interest rates this month.
Gold for April delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange gained $1.15 or 0.1%, to trade at $1,227.65 a troy ounce.
The metal traded close to session lows of $1225.00 but turned positive, as a raft of geopolitical concerns helped the yellow-metal shrug off increased expectations the U.S. central banks would raise interest rates at its next meeting on March 14-15.
In Europe, former French Prime Minister Alain Juppe, announced Monday he would not seek the country’s presidency – this is widely viewed as a positive for anti-European candidate Marine Le Pen and added an element of uncertainty to the outcome of French Presidential elections.
Over the weekend, U.S. President Donald Trump accused Barack Obama of wiretapping him during the 2016 election campaign while North Korea conducted missile tests early Monday, which increased demand for the yellow metal, as a safe haven investment.
Meanwhile, expectations that the U.S. central bank will hike rates in March reached its highest level on Monday. According to Investing.com’s Fed rate monitor tool, nearly 90% of traders expect a rate hike in March, compared to just under 80% last Friday.
Gold is sensitive to moves in U.S. interest rates, which lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding assets such as bullion, while boosting the dollar in which it is priced.
Elsewhere, silver futures traded 0.5% higher at $17.83 a troy ounce.
Copper traded lower at $2.65 while platinum traded at $980.40 down 1.38%