Washington, US (BBN) – Gold prices rose on Thursday in Asia with tensions between Iran and the US, over a ballistic missile test by Tehran this week and even the tenor of President Donald Trump’s phone calls with world leaders and attention turns to the possibility of a strike in Chile at a key copper mine.
US National Security Adviser Michael Flynn said late Wednesday the White House has put Iran “on notice” over the missile test, raising concerns over steps that the US may take.
Later, Trump tweeted that Iran has usurped power in neighbouring Iraq.
“Iran is rapidly taking over more and more of Iraq even after the US has squandered three trillion dollars there. Obvious long ago!”
Gold Futures for April delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose 0.74% to $1,217.35 a troy ounce.
Elsewhere in metals trading, copper futures rose 0.33% to $2.221 a pound with investors watching developments surrounding a strike threat by workers in Chile at the world’s largest mine.
Overnight, gold prices fell slightly in the US on Wednesday with investors noting upbeat language from the Fed in the latest policy review signaling rate hikes remain on track.
The Federal Reserve held its fire on interest rates as widely expected on Wednesday, but was optimistic on the outlook for the economy in keeping its benchmark overnight lending rate target at 0.5% to 0.75% following a 25 basis point hike in December.
“Measures of consumer and business sentiment have improved of late,” the committee said in its statement, using new language that jibes with voices on Wall Street following the election of Donald Trump as president.
“Job gains remained solid and the unemployment rate stayed near its recent low,” the statement said, reflecting just a minor tweak from language at the December meeting.
As well, payroll processing firm ADP said non-farm private employment rose by 246,000 last month, easily surpassing forecasts for an increase of 165,000.