Gold slips slightly as dollar lifts

Gold edged lower on Monday due to an uptick in the dollar, although prices were stuck in a tight range as investors looked forward to US inflation data and comments from Federal Reserve officials this week.

Spot gold was down 0.2% at $2,020.01/oz, oscillating in a $5 range, at 10.03am GMT. US gold futures fell 0.2% at $2,034/oz.

The dollar index was up 0.1%, making greenback-priced bullion less appealing for other currency holders.

“Gold has seen relatively muted price action in recent sessions, as markets continue to yearn for greater clarity on Fed rate cuts,” said Han Tan, chief market analyst at Exinity Group.

“Higher-than-expected CPI data may prompt spot gold to test the psychological $2k mark for immediate support. Spot gold may push above its 50-day moving average if shown lower-than-expected CPI prints that help restore expectations for Fed rate cuts.”

The Reuters poll for US January CPI projects a 0.2% monthly rise, down from 0.3% in December, which could fuel expectations of a Fed rate cut in May. Core CPI is expected up 0.3%, unchanged from December.

Several Fed policymakers, including chair Jerome Powell, said last week that they would wait to cut rates until they were more confident that inflation would fall to 2%.

The US CPI data is due on Tuesday, followed by retail sales data on Thursday and producer price index (PPI) data on Friday, while markets also await comments from at least seven Fed officials this week.

Traders have all but ruled out a rate cut at the Fed’s next meeting in March, while they see about a 61% chance of a cut in May, according to the CME Fedwatch tool.

Spot platinum rose 0.2% to $873.49/oz, while palladium gained 0.9% to $867.24, while silver was up 1% to $22.83/oz.