Gold prices edged lower on Wednesday as the dollar came off the day’s lows ahead of the release of the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s most recent policy meeting.
Worries about the ongoing war in Ukraine and fresh sanctions on Russia limited gold’s downside.
Expectations of aggressive policy tightening by the Federal Reserve lifted the dollar index to 99.75 in the Asian session today. The index subsequently dropped to 99.31 before recovering to 99.56.
The dollar firmed and Treasury yields surged after Fed Governor Lael Brainard, who is awaiting Senate confirmation to serve as the Fed’s vice chairwoman, called the task of reducing inflation pressures “paramount” and indicated an aggressive approach to shrinking the Fed’s balance sheet.
Gold futures for June ended down by $4.40 or about 0.2% at $1,923.10 an ounce.
Silver futures for May ended lower by $0.076 at $24.458 an ounce, while Copper futures for May settled at $4.7380 per pound, down $0.0570 from the previous close.
The US has said it will impose “severe and immediate economic costs on the Putin regime for its atrocities in Ukraine, including in Bucha.”
Sanctions include freezing the US assets of Putin’s daughters, and cutting them off from the US financial system.
Washington also said it will apply “full blocking” sanctions on Sberbank and Alfa Bank, Russia’s largest public and private financial institutions.
The European Commission has already proposed new sanctions including banning Russian coal imports, raising worries about a new global supply challenge.