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  • Gold remains heavy near the monthly low after dropping the most since late February the previous day.
  • West versus China, US-Russia tussle and virus woes weigh on risks.
  • Upbeat US data, hopes of stimulus and faster vaccinations favor the US dollar.
  • US ADP, President Biden’s infrastructure plan awaited for fresh impulse, China’s NBS Manufacturing PMI can offer immediate direction.

Gold prints a three-day losing streak while holding lower ground near $1,685 amid the initial Asian session trading on Wednesday. The yellow metal dropped heavily on Tuesday after the US dollar index (DXY) marked a fresh high since early November 2020. The downside move gets extra help from geopolitical headlines recently while cautious sentiment ahead of the key data/events also weighs on the bullion prices.

US dollar benefits from risk-off mood, positive catalysts at home”¦

While the greenback’s run-up to multi-day high could be traced to gold’s latest weakness, upbeat US fundamentals and risk-aversion wave are likely behind the US dollar’s strength.

Talking about the risks, the coronavirus (COVID-19) resurgence in Europe and Australia joins vaccine jitters to weigh the sentiment first hand. Also on the negative side could be the Western tussle with China. Recently, the US reiterated its resistance to Chinese intervention in Hong Kong politics and delaying the LegCo elections that were initially planned for September. Also, UK Trade Secretary Liz Truss is about to push global leaders to get tough on China, per Financial Times (FT) and show the Western discomfort with the dragon nation. Elsewhere, Russia is alleged to have stolen thousands of the US State Department documents while the United Nation’s inaction over North Korea’s latest missile test could also amplify the global move to tame the hermit kingdom.

On the positive side, brighter prospects of negotiations between the US and Iran over the nuclear deal as well as the jump in global vaccinations seem to battle the bears.

Amid these plays, the Wall Street benchmarks step back from record tops whereas the US 10-year Treasury yield rises to the highest since January 2020.

While the aforementioned risk-off mood favors the US dollar, due to its safe-haven appeal, recently positive data from the world’s largest economy and faster vaccinations in America also cement the greenback, which in turn suggests the further weakness of gold.

It should, however, be noted that the cautious mood ahead of today’s speech from US President Joe Biden (anticipated) and China’s official activity data for March probe the gold bears.

Technical analysis

With a clear downside break of 21-day SMA level of $1,720, not to forget sustained trading below a two-month-old resistance line near $1,730, gold prices are likely to break the monthly low of $1,676. However, lows marked during May and June 2020 around $1,670 can test bears afterward.