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Central Banks Drive Gold Prices to Record Highs Amidst Uncertainty

Gold prices are rising to unprecedented levels, supported by central bank purchases as well as geopolitical concerns and monetary policy expectations. The upward momentum was sustained by expectations of multiple interest rate cuts by the Federal Reserve this year, although optimism was tempered by recent US nonfarm payroll and inflation data. Looking forward, market participants are anticipating the release of key US inflation figures and the minutes from the FOMC meeting on Wednesday to gauge the likelihood, timing, and amplitude of interest rate reductions by the Fed. The data could introduce volatility to the precious metals market. Central bank purchases, especially by China, remain a major supporting factor for gold, with other emerging markets institutions such as the Indian central bank also bolstering their reserves of the yellow metal. Despite reaching peak levels, gold prices remain supported by solid demand, evidenced by rising net long positions. However, following its strong surge, gold could be exposed to price corrections over the short term in particular if Wednesday's US data comes in stronger than expected.

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