NEWS | 2/28/2022 12:09:51 PM GMT
Gold prices grind higher around nine-month-old resistance area.
Risk-off remains in full steam as fears of nuclear war, Zelenskyy’s assassination loom ahead of Kyiv-Moscow negotiation.
DXY stays firmer as the NFP week begins, stock futures, yields drop.
Gold Weekly Forecast: Volatility to continue as investors stay on edge
Update: Gold slipped below the $1,900 mark during the early part of the European session and filled a major part of its bullish gap opening on Monday, though bulls managed to defend the 200-hour SMA. The incoming headlines surrounding the Ukraine crisis continued weighing on investors' sentiment, which, in turn, acted as a tailwind for the safe-haven XAU/USD. In the latest development, Western nations ramped up efforts to punish Russia for its invasion of Ukraine and imposed tough new sanctions, including cutting some of its banks off the SWIFT financial network. Russian President Vladimir Putin upped the ante on Sunday and put the country’s strategic nuclear forces on high alert.
The market nervousness, however, eased a bit after the Russian negotiator said that they are interested to reach an agreement with Ukraine as soon as possible. In fact, the Ukraine-Russia talks have reportedly started in Belarus and expectations for a likely ceasefire led to modest recovery in the equity markets. This was seen as a key factor that exerted some intraday downward pressure on gold. That said, the emergence of fresh US dollar selling at higher levels helped limit any meaningful slide for the dollar-denominated commodity. Nevertheless, the XAU/USD, so far, has managed to hold just above the $1,900 mark as the market focus remains on the Russia-Ukraine saga.
Previous update: Gold (XAU/USD) defends the week-start gap-up around $1,905, up 0.80% intraday amid the rush to risk-safety during Monday’s Asian session.
The yellow metal snapped a three-week uptrend even after rising to July 2021 high. However, the weekend headlines concerning the Russia-Ukraine tussles amplified the risk-off mood and portrayed an upside gap as the NFP week begins.
Among the latest headlines, the UK Times’ report suggesting Russia ordered 400 mercenaries “to assassinate (Ukraine) President Zelenskyy and his government and prepare the ground for Moscow to take control,” gain major attention. Also important were the comments from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen who said to the EU News that the European Union (EU) wants Ukraine in the bloc while also adding, “They’re one of us.”
The weekend headlines were rather mixed as the West levied harsh sanctions on Moscow but President Vladimir didn’t step back and put nuclear arsenal on high alert, raising fears of a nuclear war. On the same line are the latest headlines from Belarus that the nation wants to renounce its non-nuclear neutral status. However, both the nation’s readiness for negotiations trigger the ray of hope.
While portraying the mood, the US Dollar Index (DXY) extends a three-week uptrend while the US 10-year Treasury yields print six basis points (bps) of a daily downside to 1.90% at the latest. Further, stocks in Asia-Pacific are also in the red whereas the S&P 500 Futures pare drop nearly 2.50% at the latest.
Moving on, the Russia-Ukraine talks will be in focus for near-term directions while US trade numbers for January and Chicago Purchasing Managers’ Index for February may direct intraday moves. It’s worth noting that the monthly US Nonfarm Payrolls (NFP) will be crucial this week as traders slow down on their hopes of a 0.50% rate hike in March.
Gold failed to provide a decisive upside break of a seven-month-old rising channel, despite marking an uptick to the September 2020 highs during the last week.
The pullback move gains support from the RSI’s retreat from the overbought territory and receding bullish bias of the MACD, which in turn challenges the recent upside moves of the XAU/USD prices.