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Gold drops to lowest in over 2 years after parade of rate hikes

Sept. 23, 2022 Updated Fri., Sept. 23, 2022 at 2:48 p.m.

A selection of gold bars of various weights are shown at Gold Investments Ltd. bullion dealers in London on July 29, 2020.  (Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg )
A selection of gold bars of various weights are shown at Gold Investments Ltd. bullion dealers in London on July 29, 2020. (Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg )
By Yvonne Yue Li Bloomberg

Gold headed for a second weekly decline after a slew of central banks followed the Federal Reserve in raising interest rates to cool inflation.

Bullion slipped to the lowest in more than two years on Friday as the dollar climbed to a record.

The precious metal joined the selloff in risky assets as investors opted for cash after U.K.’s economic plan reignited concerns that central banks’ aggressive interest-rate hikes to rein in rampant price increases may lead to a recession.

Weakness in bullion is “very likely to persist” due to “monetary tightening that makes gold costlier to hold,” said Gnanasekar Thiagarajan, director at Commtrendz Risk Management Services.

“However, recession fears and any escalation in the Russia and Ukraine conflict could support prices.”

Central banks in Switzerland, Norway and Britain followed the Fed’s lead in announcing interest-rate hikes to curb price increases.

The non-interest bearing metal, which is priced in the U.S. currency, usually has a negative correlation with the dollar and rates.

Outflows from exchange-traded funds have continued, with holdings now close to the lowest this year.

U.S. business activity contracted in September for a third-straight month, though at a more moderate pace as a pickup in orders and a further softening of inflation allayed concerns of a more-pronounced pullback.

Spot gold declined 1.7% to $1,643.15 an ounce by 10:47 a.m. in New York, heading for a weekly loss.

The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index climbed 1.1% to a record high. Silver, platinum and palladium all fell.

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