Gold futures surge $32 higher after the Fed signals a pause in hikes is imminent
The rally in gold spot and futures returns after a small two-day correction. On Monday of this week, gold hit a new high value at $2015 per ounce. It was approximately one year ago to the day that gold futures traded above $2000 per ounce. Gold traded to a high of $2077 in March 2022. What followed was a multi-month correction that began a conclusion in September through November of last year. On November 3 a triple bottom was identified, the multi-month correction concluded, and a multi-month rally began.
As of 6 o’clock EST p.m. gold futures basis, the most active April contract has just opened up overseas in Australia. It is currently fixed at $1972.10 which is an increase of $22.50 based on the closing price in New York.
Market participants United States are now followed by overseas traders digesting what the Federal Reserve said and did after today’s FOMC meeting. As expected, they did raise their fed funds rate by ¼%. However, for the first time since they began their rate hikes they announced a pivot. That pivot is not rate cuts but rather that rate hikes will be paused with possibly one more rate hike of ¼% in May. They also confirmed that they would continue to keep this terminal rate elevated throughout 2023, a position they have maintained for quite some time.
While many investors had hoped to hear something about a rate cut the Federal Reserve made it clear that that is not something on the table right now and we can expect to see elevated interest rates throughout the remainder of the year. The pivot was that the Federal Reserve announced that they would not continue aggressive rate hikes and that a pause of rate hikes is imminent and soon.
It was this news that took gold prices higher and move the dollar lower. Currently, the dollar is down by 0.66% with the dollar index fixed at 102.195.
However, this FOMC meeting had a quite different tone than expected in that they announced a pause for the first since it began an aggressive period of rate hikes in March 2022 taking the Fed funds rate from near to its current rate which is 4 ¾% to 5.00%.
According to the CME’s FedWatch tool, there is a 38.8% probability that they will pause the rate hikes in May and a 61.2% probability that they will enact their last rate hike in this cycle of ¼% which would take their terminal rate to 5.00% to 5.1/4%.
Today’s announcement by Chairman Powell that a pause in rate hikes is imminent was solid news for the precious metals and disruptive for US equities and the dollar which traded lower.
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Wishing you as always good trading,
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