Gold extended gains into a fourth straight session on Monday to trade near its highest in two weeks, boosted by a weaker dollar and caution from the Federal Reserve on the timing of a possible hike in U.S. interest rates.
The greenback has been under pressure since last Wednesday when the Fed sounded a cautious note on the health of economic recovery in the United States, and slashed its median estimate for the federal funds rate.
Market players’ consensus expectation for the U.S. central bank’s interest rate hike have shifted, with a majority of Wall Street’s top banks now expecting the Fed to hold off on raising rates until at least September, and the odds for a June hike fading, a Reuters poll showed.
Despite the modest gain in bullion prices, data showed that investor sentiment has not improved drastically.
Hedge funds and money managers slashed their bullish bets in gold and silver futures and options for a sixth straight week in the week ended March 17, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed on Friday.