February 26, 2021
Gold heads for second monthly fall as Treasury yields rise
(Reuters) - Gold prices fell to a one-week low on Friday, and were headed for a second straight weekly and monthly decline as brighter economic outlook and inflation fears propped up U.S. Treasury yields.
Spot gold eased 0.1% to $1,767.81 per ounce, having earlier fallen to its lowest since Feb. 19 at
$1,764.90. Prices were down 0.8% for the week and 4.2% for the month so far.
U.S. gold futures fell 0.6% to $1,765.70 on Friday.
Prices had dropped 1.9% on Thursday as benchmark U.S. Treasury yields hit their highest since the pandemic began, lifting the dollar.
"Rising inflation expectations as markets price in the reopening of developed market economies are pushing yields higher and pressuring gold," said OANDA senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley.
Higher inflation boosts gold but also lifts Treasury yields, which in turn increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.
"The overall picture looks dire, gold is now in danger of a material move lower, if yields rise again," Halley said.
Reflecting investor sentiment, holdings in the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Trust, fell 0.6% on Thursday to their lowest since May 2020.
The U.S. Federal Reserve's comment that it is not concerned with rising bond yields has added to gold's misery, Phillip Futures said in a note, adding that the $1,760 level continued to be a major support for the metal.
Silver fell 0.7% to $27.19 an ounce, but was poised for a third straight monthly rise. Palladium dropped 0.8% to $2,382.02, but was set to register its best month in three with a 7% gain.
Platinum eased 0.1% to $1,215.09 and was set to mark its worst week since end-October with a 4.7% decline, but was on track to gain for a fourth straight month, rising 13%.