NEW YORK (Kitco ) - Gold prices scaled their highest levels since late April on Friday and were on track for a fifth consecutive weekly gain amid anticipation of slower rate hikes from the U.S. Federal Reserve and fears of a possible recession.
Spot gold was little changed at $1,929.70 per ounce. Prices rose 0.5% this week so far. U.S. gold futures rose 0.4% to $1,931.80.
Also helping is “the desire to mitigate risk from factors such as inflationary forces, how the central banks are managing them, and mixed views over the outlook for equities against an uncertain economic backdrop.”
Fed funds futures are pricing in a smaller 25-basis-point interest rate increase by the U.S. central bank at the conclusion of its two-day meeting on Feb. 1, after recent economic data showed signs of cooling inflation.
Gold tends to gain when rate hike expectations recede because lower rates reduce the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.
The dollar was 0.1% higher but was set for a weekly decline, making gold a more attractive bet for those holding other currencies.