Much of the attention on precious metals is focused on the US Federal Reserve’s decision to keep hiking the interest rate in 2017. Fed officials are closely watching the economic numbers coming out of the US. These numbers can give clues as to the economic performance of the country, which, in turn, can determine for the Fed whether the time is right for further another interest rate liftoff.
According to Fed fund futures, there’s a 75% chance of another interest rate hike in the next policy meeting, which is scheduled for June.
Gold versus interest rates
Another interest rate hike could be a bad thing for gold, though the rising risk in markets could still boost precious metals. At the same time, the higher the intermediary cash flows provided on US Treasuries, the lower the demand could be for metals like gold and silver.
To be sure, rises and falls in gold are often followed by precious metal funds like the SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) and the iShares Silver Trust (SLV), which have risen 8.7% and 6.9%, respectively, on a year-to-date basis.