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Copper Falls as Hawkish Fed Outweighs Supply Risk; Gold Steadies

Copper headed for the steepest decline in six weeks in New York as a hawkish Federal Reserve crimped the outlook for demand, outweighing supply risks. Gold recovered as the US dollar lost early gains.

Copper fell as much as 3.6% to $3.563 a pound Monday in New York. The London Metal Exchange is closed due to a holiday in the UK. Meanwhile, gold pared losses after the dollar retreated, and traded little changed at $1,739.09 an ounce as of 10:54 a.m. in New York. Gold is heading for a fifth monthly decline, the longest such stretch in four years, as higher interest rates dull the allure of the non-interest bearing metal. A stronger dollar has also weighed on gold priced in the US currency. The two-year Treasury yield reached the highest since 2007.

“Restoring price stability will likely require maintaining a restrictive policy stance for some time,” Powell said Friday in remarks at the Kansas City Fed’s annual policy forum in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. “The historical record cautions strongly against prematurely loosening policy.” He reiterated that another “unusually large” increase in the benchmark lending rate could be appropriate when officials gather next month, though he stopped short of committing to one, saying that a decision will depend on “the totality of the incoming data and the evolving outlook.” Meanwhile, Senator Elizabeth Warren took aim at the Fed’s inflation-fighting game plan on Sunday, saying she was worried the central bank will tip the US economy into a recession, adding that she doesn’t believe increasing interest rates can contain current price pressures.

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