Off The Wire
Gold Off Six-Year Peak As Dollar Rises After Fed Comments
June 26 (Reuters) - Gold prices slipped on Wednesday, moving further away from a six-year peak hit in the previous session, as the dollar gained after Federal Reserve officials played down expectations of aggressive monetary easing.
* Spot gold was down 0.6% at $1,415.01 per ounce as of 0122 GMT, after hitting its highest since May, 2013 at $1,438.63 in the previous session.
* U.S. gold futures were steady at $1,418.50 an ounce.
* Fed Chair Jerome Powell on Tuesday said the central bank is “insulated from short-term political pressures,” pushing back against U.S. President Donald Trump’s demand for a significant rate cut.
* Powell, however, said Fed policymakers are wrestling with whether uncertainties around U.S. tariffs, Washington’s conflict with trading partners and tame inflation require a rate cut.
* Separately, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard told Bloomberg Television he does not think the U.S. economy is dire enough to warrant a 50-basis-point cut in July.
* Trump said on Twitter on Monday that the Fed “doesn’t know what it is doing,” adding that it “raised rates far too fast” and “blew it” given low inflation and slowing global growth.
* The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies gained 0.2 pct on Wednesday after touching a three month low in the previous session.
* The United States hopes to re-launch trade talks with China after President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping meet in Japan on Saturday, but Washington will not accept any conditions around the U.S. use of tariffs in the dispute, a senior administration official said on Tuesday.
* Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, fell 0.3% to 799.61 tonnes on Tuesday from 801.96 tonnes on Monday.
* China’s net gold imports via main conduit Hong Kong in May slumped over 50% from the previous month, to the lowest level since Dec. 2018, Hong Kong government data showed on Tuesday.
* Russia, one of the world’s largest gold producers, is considering a bill to cancel value-added tax (VAT) on gold investments, a project its officials have been considering for years, starting from 2020.
DATA AHEAD (GMT)
* 0645 France Consumer Confidence July
* 1230 US Durable Goods May (Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin)