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Gold, Crude Oil Prices Fall as All Eyes Turn to FOMC Meeting Minutes

Gold, Crude Oil Prices Fall as All Eyes Turn to FOMC Meeting Minutes

2018-02-21 08:00:00
Ilya Spivak, Head Strategist, APAC
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Talking Points:

Gold prices turned sharply lower as the US Dollar returned to the offensive, undermining the appeal of the standby anti-fiat alternative. The move probably reflects pre-positioning ahead of the upcoming release of minutes from January’s FOMC meeting.

Rhetoric suggesting policymakers are turning more confident in firming inflation might rekindle fears of a more aggressive tightening cycle than what investors have accounted for. That is likely to give the greenback another upward nudge while the yellow metal declines further.

Needless to say, a familiarly cautious posture may have a similar impact to last week’s underwhelming CPI release. “Gradual” stimulus withdrawal – which by the Fed’s latest estimation means three hikes in 2018 – is arguably priced in. Officials would need to sound meaningfully more assertive to change that baseline.

Crude oil prices fell with Fed-inspired moves. Denomination in terms of USD on global markets translated into de-facto selling pressure. That was compounded by risk aversion, with the sentiment-sensitive WTI contract following the S&P 500 equities benchmark downward.

Besides the Minutes, the API estimate of weekly US inventory flows is of note. The outcome will be judged against forecasts calling for a 2.31 million barrel build in crude storage and a 1.01 million barrel inflow into gasoline stockpiles to be reported in official EIA statistics on the following day.

See our free guide to learn what are the long-term forces driving crude oil prices!

GOLD TECHNICAL ANALYSIS

Gold prices suffered the largest loss in two months, with support in the 1312.36-16.50 area (38.2% Fib retracement, support shelf) now back in the crosshairs. A daily close below that exposes the 50% level at 1301.19. Alternatively, a push above the 38.2% Fibonacci expansionat 1356.23 opens the door for a challenge of the 1366.06-71.50 zone (January 25 high, 50% expansion).

Gold, Crude Oil Prices Fall as All Eyes Turn to FOMC Meeting Minutes

CRUDE OIL TECHNICAL ANALYSIS

Crude oil prices snapped a four-day winning streak having found resistance below the $63/bbl figure. From here, a daily close below the 23.6% Fibonacci expansion at 60.61 opens the door for a test of the 38.2% level at 59.37. Alternatively, a push above the 62.72-63.41 area (February 20 high, former support) puts the January 25 high at 66.63 back into focus.

Gold, Crude Oil Prices Fall as All Eyes Turn to FOMC Meeting Minutes

--- Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for DailyFX.com

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