The United States under President Donald Trump will impose import tariff increases on steel by 10,00% and aluminum by 25,00% effective per March 22nd, 2018. The impact of high import tariffs of steel and aluminum caused China to shift the marketing of these products to other countries and could hold up the pace of the global economy. Therefore, the demand for assets valued as the safe haven for investment, such as gold, increased.
Last week US economic data that was released mostly negative. The negative data can be seen from US’s ISM Non-Manufacturing Prices for the month of February was decreased by 1,45%, US’s Factory Orders MoM for the month of January was decreased by 3,20%, US’s Exports for the month of January was decreased by 1,33%, US’s Nonfarm Productivity for the Fourth Quarter of 2017 was decreased by 2,60%, US’s Initial Jobless Claims for the month of March was increased by 10,00% and US’s Average Hourly Earnings YoY for the month of February was decreased by 0,20%.
The 2018 Potential Rate Hike
The U.S. targeted rate hike will be shown in a Summary of Economic Projection at 20-21 March FOMC meetings. Meanwhile, several economic data had downplay the market expectation of potential 2018 rate hike, such as the weekly wage grew slower in February. This week the focus is on U.S. Inflation data, the released of slower growth will restrain an optimist 2018 economic outlook and support the gold price, meanwhile faster growth of inflation will downplay the gold price.
Geopolitical Conditions U.S. and North Korea
President Donald Trump and President Kim Jong-Un agreed to meet in May – talking over North Korea’s nuclear program. Since the meeting take place in May, other issues that jeopardized the meeting will benefit the gold price in upcoming weeks and months, otherwise the meeting will suppress the market risk aversion and put gold price on edge.