Gold eases on firmer dollar, rate-hike fears
Gold prices ticked lower on Monday as the dollar firmed, with a fresh set of data cementing fears that central banks across the globe would keep raising rates to contain sticky inflation.
Spot gold was down 0.1% at $1,853.19 per ounce, as of 0037 GMT, after climbing to its highest since Feb. 15 on Friday. U.S. gold futures rose 0.3% to $1,859.60.
The dollar index edged higher, making bullion less affordable for buyers holding other currencies.
Data on Friday showed the U.S. services sector grew at a steady clip in February, with new orders and employment rising to more than one-year highs, suggesting the economy continued to expand in the first quarter.
San Francisco Federal Reserve President Mary Daly said on Saturday if data on inflation and the labour market continued to come in hotter than expected, interest rates would need to go higher, and stay there longer than Fed policymakers had projected in December.
Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin said on Friday he could envision a scenario where the central bank pushes the U.S. benchmark policy interest rate to the 5.5%-5.75% range.
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