MTECHTIPS:-Gold down 1.8% after plunging by as much as 5.3% in Asia
Gold prices came off the lowest levels of the session on Monday, after plunging to a five-year trough, amid speculation the Federal Reserve is moving closer to raising interest rates for the first time in eight years. Gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange hit an intraday low of $1,080.00 a troy ounce, a level not seen since February 2010, before recovering to trade at $1,112.40 during U.S. morning hours, down $19.50, or 1.72%. Gold plunged by as much as 5.3% in a matter of minutes during early Asian morning hours as a bout of technical selling kicked in after prices broke below a key support level close to the $1,120-level, triggering fresh sell orders amid bearish chart signals. Prices of the precious metal slumped $27.20, or 2.24%, last week, the fourth straight weekly loss, amid rising bets that a rate hike is coming in September. Gold, which yields nothing and costs money to hold, is seen as a less attractive investment during times of rising interest rates. Also on the Comex, silver futures for September delivery slumped 14.2 cents, or 0.96%, to trade at $14.69 a troy ounce, while copper for September delivery shed 2.0 cents, or 0.79%, to trade at $2.476 a pound.