MTECHTIPS:-Gold / Silver / Copper futures – weekly outlook: March

MTECHTIPS:-Gold / Silver / Copper futures – weekly outlook: March 6 – 10

MTECHTIPS-Gold prices fell on Friday and posted the largest weekly loss of 2017 so far amid growing expectations that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates later this month. Gold for April delivery settled down 0.52% at $1,225.5 on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, having touched its lowest since February 15 at $1,222.9 earlier. Gold finished the week down 2.5%. Gold then ticked up 0.13% to $1234.5 in after-hours trade. Fed Chair Janet Yellen said Friday that a rate hike “would likely be appropriate” this month if the economy remains on track. The remarks cemented the view that the Fed will raise interest rates at its next meeting on March 14-15, following a series of hawkish comments by Fed policymakers earlier in the week. Almost 80% of traders expect a rate hike at the Fed’s March meeting, compared to just over 60% on Wednesday, according to Investing.com’s Fed rate monitor tool. Higher interest rates are typically bearish for gold, which is denominated in dollars and struggles to compete with yield-bearing assets when borrowing costs rise. Elsewhere in precious metals trading, silver was at $17.99 a troy ounce late Friday, and ended the week down 3.62%, closing the week lower for the first time in 2017. Copper was at $2.7 a pound at the close and ended the week with a gain of just 0.26%. Platinum settled up 1.08% at $1,000.6 late Friday, paring the week’s losses to 2.95%. In the week ahead, markets will be looking ahead to Friday’s U.S. jobs report, which could seal the deal for a Fed rate hike later this month

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