SMS Finance

Precious metals surge, oil strong, iron ore weakens

Gold reached a fresh record on Friday, despite the ascent of the US dollar and US treasury yields, buoyed by the American economy adding far more new jobs than expected last month. Middle East tensions over Gaza and Iran’s retaliation vow following an attack on its embassy in Syria further fueled gold’s rise.

Comex gold for June delivery closed up $36.90 to settle at $2,345.40 per ounce, marking a gain of 1.76% for the day and over 4% for the week. Even in after-hours trading, June gold rose to $2,349.10 an ounce, defying expectations of a sell-off amidst the dollar and bond yield surge following the robust jobs data.

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a staggering rise of 303,000 new jobs in March, significantly surpassing the consensus expectation of 200,000 positions, driving the dollar up and making gold more expensive for international buyers.

Amidst these movements, copper closed at $4.24 a pound on Comex, registering a nearly 6% gain for the week. China’s copper processing industry faced ongoing challenges due to a shortage of concentrates, with copper prices hitting an annual high at $9,256 per tonne on the LME.

Oil futures experienced a robust rise of around 4% for the week, with Brent ending at $90.86 a barrel and US West Texas crude at $86.91, both marking their highest closes in months. Despite a slight increase in the number of oil rigs operating in the US, the overall count remained lower compared to the previous year.

Meanwhile, OPEC+ maintained its production quotas, exerting continued influence on global supply, while Saudi Arabia raised its official selling prices for Asian buyers.

In contrast, May SGX iron ore futures prices closed the week at $96.85, down over 5% from the previous week and nearly 32% from the year’s high of $140 a tonne in January.

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