Investing.com — Gold prices rose to their highest in two weeks Friday, while silver hit its highest in a month in what appeared to be a largely technical move, albeit one done in the relatively confident expectation of an interest rate cut from the Federal Reserve next week.
The move was all the more conspicuous for happening in the absence of any major move in global bond prices. European bond yields edged higher as the German Ifo business climate index stabilized, while U.S. Treasury yields were broadly flat.
According to Investing.com’s Fed Rate Monitor Tool, investors see the chance of a 25 basis-point cut in the Fed Funds rate on Wednesday, to a range of 1.50%-1.75% at just under 95%. That’s up from 88% at the end last week. In addition, the perceived chance of a further rate cut in December has risen to 25% from 20% in the course of the last week.
The monetary easing trend across the world has been in evidence repeatedly this week, with the central bank of Russia following its peers in Indonesia and Turkey in cutting its key rate on Friday. The CBR cut by a larger-than-expected 50 basis points to 6.50%, citing a sharp drop in its inflation expectations. Turkey’s central bank had cut by an even more aggressive 250 basis points on Thursday, further unwinding the emergency measures it took to defend the lira earlier this year (when the pressure on the currency from U.S. interest rates was much more acute).
And while the European Central Bank didn’t add to the multi-faceted stimulus package it unveiled in September at its council meeting Thursday, ECB President Mario Draghi repeated that the risks to the eurozone economy were still heavily tilted to the downside.
“The Fed will most likely cut rates for a third consecutive time next week,” Nordea analysts Morten Lund and Anders Svendsen wrote in a preview. “Key figures have clearly turned to the worse since the September meeting. The latest ISM prints from both the manufacturing and non-manufacturing sector were big disappointments, while, for instance, the long-term inflation expectation measure from Michigan University reached an all-time low.”