Lackluster trading in gold futures Thursday gave way to a solid move higher, as tepid trade in equity markets and persistent worries about U.S.-China trade tensions and sluggish global economic growth helped lift prices toward their highest finish in two weeks.
Gold for August delivery on Comex GCM19, +0.40% climbed $5.10, or 0.4%, to trade at $1,286.10 an ounce. A finish around this level would be the highest for a most-active contract since May 16, FactSet data show. Gold was set to end the month slightly higher and is hanging on to a 0.2% weekly gain.
“Wall Street has a neutral outlook on gold and many investors are confused as to whether [Federal Reserve] capitulation will be enough to take prices higher,” Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda, told MarketWatch. “Trade tensions have failed to deliver a significant move higher because of the strong dollar.”
Moya also said the rise in gold prices Thursday “stemmed” from comments from billionaire Thomas Kaplan, founder of Electrum Group, made to Bloomberg Wednesday afternoon. Kaplan told the news agency that he believes gold prices will increase to $3,000 to $5,000 if not higher depending on macro circumstances.”
July silver SIN19, +0.48% rose 7.9 cents, or 0.6%, to $14.49 an ounce, extending its rebound to a second straight session after settling Tuesday at $14.32, the lowest price of the year so far. Silver futures were set for a weekly skid of 0.5% and a month-to-date slide of 3.3%. The exchanged-traded gold fund, the SPDR Gold Shares GLD, +0.57% meanwhile, was trading up 0.2% for the week, with a 0.3% gain in sight for the month, and the silver-focused iShares Silver Trust SLV, +0.60% was set for a 0.4% weekly decline and drop of 3% in the month to date.
Precious metals have enjoyed some gains from the flight to perceived safety in gold during the Sino-American trade clashes, but worries about global demand and a strengthening dollar have also capped bullion’s moves. market participants have said.