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Gold prices remain below $1,800 following 0.3% rise in U.S. CPI

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(Kitco News) - The gold market is off its session lows but remains under $1,800 an ounce as consumer inflation pressures rise less than expected in August.

Tuesday, the U.S. Labor Department said its U.S. Consumer Price Index rose 0.3% in August, after a 0.5% rise in July. The data missed consensus forecasts as economists were forecasting a 0.4% rise.

For the year, the report said that headline inflation rose 5.3%, in line with expectations.

Meanwhile, core CPI, which strips out food and energy costs, increased 0.1% last month, compared to a 0.3% increase in July. Economists were expecting to see a rise of 0.3%. The report said this was the smallest increase in core CPI since February.

For the year, core CPI rose 4%, the report said.

The gold market continues to struggle to catch a bid even as inflation remains high by historical standards. December gold futures last traded at $1,790.70 an ounce, down 0.20% on the day. According to some market analysts, the CPI data is weighing on the U.S. dollar, which should provide some support for gold prices.

Energy prices had the most significant impact on consumer prices last month. The report said that the energy index increased 2% in August, driven by a 2.8% rise in gasoline prices. Meanwhile, food prices rose 0.4%.

Although inflation pressures eased last month, Paul Ashworth, chief U.S. economist at Capital Economics said that the threat of rising prices hasn’t disappeared.

“We expect further declines over the coming months, as the reopening inflationary pressure fades - and maybe even reverses a little. But, look under the hood, and what we see is cyclical inflation pressure continuing to build,” he said in a note. “The latter is what the Fed should be really worried about, as it means that core inflation will remain above target for the foreseeable future.”

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