Earlier in the week the Federal Open Market Committee cut a further $10 billion from its monthly debt purchasing program, maintaining the pace of its conclusion.
Today’s non-farm payroll figures smashed expectations coming in at 288,000, exceeding the markets 218,000 call and pointing towards a US economy comfortable with the pace of change. All of this brings us a step closer to the Federal Reserve being in a position to start raising interest rates. It is only when this begins that gold's Achilles heel will be back in focus.
This week has seen the start of India’s second biggest gold buying festival Akshaya Tritiya. During the festival it is widely viewed as auspicious to purchase gold jewellery, and as India is the second largest consumer of physical gold, demand looks set to rise. The Indian government still imposes a hefty $100 an ounce tax on imported gold, and only at the end of this festival will we see how badly that has tempered demand.
I mentioned yesterday that if gold closed below $1278 would we look to change our opinion. On the intraday it has certainly tested this, but at the time of writing it has moved back above $1280 and as such, we would maintain our stance.