Metals Stocks: Gold gives back big chunk of flight-to-safety gains

Gold lost ground Tuesday, giving back a big chunk of the previous session’s haven-inspired gains in a bout of apparent profit-taking.

Gold for April delivery GCJ20, -1.37% on Comex fell $24.10, or 1.4%, to $1,652.50 an ounce, while March silver SIH20, -2.73% dropped 47.6 cents, or 2.5%, to $18.40 an ounce. Gold advanced 1.7% on Monday to a seven-year high as investors dumped global equities and jumped into traditional haven assets amid worries about the spread of COVID-19 outside of China.

Stock-index futures pointed to a modestly higher start for U.S. equities on Tuesday after the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -3.56% and the S&P 500 SPX, -3.35% fell more than 3% for their biggest one-day percentage decline in two years.

Gold “continued marching north yesterday, hitting resistance near $1,689, a territory last seen back in January 2013. Then it entered a corrective mode, which continued today as well,” said Charalambos Pissouros, senior market analyst at JFD Group, in a note.

Analysts said pressure on gold appeared to stem from profit-taking on recent gains. The most recent Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed a record high in net long speculative gold positions, noted Ipek Ozkardeskaya, analyst at Swissquote.

In other metals trade, March palladium PAH20, +1.76% rose 1.7% to $2,563.70 an ounce, while April platinum PLJ20, -1.47% dropped 1.6% to $958.80 an ounce.

March copper HGH20, -0.12% was down 0.1% at $2.574 a pound.