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Gold Slips to Over Seventh-month Low as Rising Yields Dent Appeal



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Gold prices fell to their lowest in more than seven months on Friday, on course for their worst week since the end of November, as rising U.S. Treasury yields eroded the non-yielding bullion’s appeal.

Spot gold fell 0.4% to $1,769.03 per ounce by 0250 GMT, having touched its lowest since July 2 at $1,759.29 earlier in the session. Prices have declined 3% so far this week.

U.S. gold futures slipped 0.6% to $1,765.30.

”U.S. bond yields have been rallying quite strongly in the last week, and there’s growing momentum that they can lift further as U.S. and global growth recovers more quickly as vaccines roll out,” said Lachlan Shaw, National Australia Bank’s head of commodity research.

Benchmark U.S. Treasury yields hovered close to a near one-year high hit earlier in the week. Higher yields increase the opportunity cost of holding bullion, which pays no interest.

Gold’s decline came despite an unexpected rise in U.S. jobless claims last week.

”The bond market is looking forward to where the U.S. economy might be as we move through the year as vaccines ease the weight of the pandemic on economic activity, and with plenty of stimulus and support from U.S. Federal Reserve,” Shaw said.

The recent record surge in Bitcoin has also ”been competing with gold so far as speculation, a store of wealth and portfolio diversifier,” Shaw said, adding that a continued rally in Bitcoin will be a headwind for gold.

Silver eased 1.1% to $26.71 an ounce, after falling over 2.5% so far this week, its worst since mid-January.

Platinum slipped 2.4% to $1,244.19, while palladium shed 0.7% to $2,334.58.

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Airline CEOs, Biden Officials Consider Green-Fuel Breaks



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Chief executives of the nation’s largest passenger and cargo airlines met with key Biden administration officials Friday to talk about reducing emissions from airplanes and push incentives for lower-carbon aviation fuels.

The White House said the meeting with climate adviser Gina McCarthy and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg also touched on economic policy and curbing the spread of COVID-19 travel has been a vector for the virus. But industry officials said emissions dominated the discussion.

United Airlines said CEO Scott Kirby asked administration officials to support incentives for sustainable aviation fuel and technology to remove carbon from the atmosphere. In December, United said it invested an undisclosed amount in a carbon-capture company partly owned by Occidental Petroleum.

A United Nations aviation group has concluded that biofuels will remain a tiny source of aviation fuel for several years. Some environmentalists would prefer the Biden administration to impose tougher emissions standards on aircraft rather than create breaks for biofuels.

Biofuels are false solutions that dont decarbonize air travel, said Clare Lakewood, a climate-law official with the Center for Biological Diversity. Real action on aircraft emissions requires phasing out dirty, aging aircraft, maximizing operational efficiencies and funding the rapid development of electrification.

Airplanes account for a small portion of emissions that cause climate change about 2% to 3% but their share has been growing rapidly and is expected to roughly triple by mid-century with the global growth in travel.

The airline trade group says U.S. carriers have more than doubled the fuel efficiency of their fleets since 1978 and plan further reductions in carbon emissions. But the independent International Council on Clean Transportation says passenger traffic is growing nearly four times faster than fuel efficiency, leading to a 33% increase in emissions between 2013 and 2019.

The U.S. accounts for about 23% of aircraft carbon-dioxide emissions, followed by Europe at 19% and China at 13%, the transportation group’s researchers estimated.

The White House said McCarthy, Buttigieg and economic adviser Brian Deese were grateful and optimistic to hear the airline CEOs talk about current and future efforts to combat climate change.

Nicholas Calio, president of the trade group Airlines for America, said the exchange was positive.

Airlines are ready, willing and able partners, and we want to be part of the solution” to climate change, Calio said in a statement. We stand ready to work in partnership with the Biden administration.

Disclaimer: This post has been auto-published from an agency feed without any modifications to the text and has not been reviewed by an editor

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