Gold holds ground as investors await U.S. data for rate-cut clues

Gold prices dipped on Wednesday as the dollar edged up, while market participants assessed the timeline for potential U.S. interest rate cuts and were on the lookout for fresh cues for further clarity on monetary policy.

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Gold slipped on Wednesday while investors awaited U.S. data for clues on potential rate cuts by the Federal Reserve, though a slight uptick in the dollar limited any upsides.

Spot gold fell 0.2% at $2,308.29 per ounce. U.S. gold futures declined 0.3% at $2,316.30.

The dollar edged up 0.1% on renewed bets of rate cuts this year. A stronger dollar makes gold unattractive for foreign currency holders.

“Market is likely to wait for a catalyst for additional upside, whereas the downside does appear to be capped by the limited participation from money managers,” said Daniel Ghali, commodity strategist at TD Securities.

Investors are now looking forward to the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment reading on Friday and comments from a slew of Federal Reserve officials this week. The U.S. consumer price index data is due on May 15.

After recent weak U.S. jobs data, money markets are pricing in two Fed rate cuts this year and around 40 basis points of monetary easing.

U.S. job growth slowed more than expected in April and the increase in annual wages fell below 4.0% for the first time in nearly three years.

Lower interest rates decrease the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.

Meanwhile, the European Central Bank has all but promised a rate cut on June 6 and worries that a delay in monetary policy easing by the U.S. Fed could also force it to take its time.

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