Gold Futures Settle Notably Higher

Gold futures settled higher on Tuesday, gaining for a third straight session, as the dollar shed ground against other currencies.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's testimony about inflation and interest rate before the Senate Banking Committee had a significant impact on the movements in the futures markets.

Traders also looked ahead to the inflation data due on Wednesday. Expectations are that inflation may have risen by an annual 5.4% in December from 4.9% in the prior month.

The dollar index dropped to 95.64, losing nearly 0.4%.

Gold futures for February ended higher by $19.70 or about 1.1% at $1,818.50 an ounce, a one-week high.

Silver futures for March ended higher by $0.350 at $22.812 an ounce, while Copper futures for March settled at $4.4290 per pound, up $0.0770 from the previous close.

In prepared remarks, Powell highlighted elevated inflation as a result of supply chain issues and said the Fed would use all of its tools to prevent higher inflation from becoming entrenched.

"We can begin to see that the post-pandemic economy is likely to be different in some respects," Powell said. "The pursuit of our goals will need to take these differences into account."

He added, "To that end, monetary policy must take a broad and forward-looking view, keeping pace with an ever-evolving economy."

Powell later told the committee the Fed would be willing to raise interest rates more than currently expected to combat inflation.

While Powell's remarks have been described as "hawkish," they are not seen as indicating the Fed will be more aggressive than already suggested by the minutes of the central bank's latest meeting.

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