After a volatile day gold settled at $1,608 an ounce on Monday; down $11 on the day after earlier reaching a high of $1,623.
Gold has now pulled back 10% from 2012 highs of $1,789 reached in late February, but is still slightly ahead of the levels the precious metal opened with in 2012.
US investment bank Morgan Stanley on Monday also lowered its price estimates for gold, cutting Q3 forecasts 11% to $1,650 and for the fourth quarter 13% to $1,750.
Commodityonline.com quotes from the research note:
“We think sentiment in the coming weeks will be influenced by market perceptions of the level of U.S., ECB and Chinese government intervention to re-stimulate industrial growth. We remain cautious toward metals until we see solid evidence of a pick-up in demand,” Morgan Stanley concluded.
Gold bulls are hoping for a shot in the arm from Ben Bernanke, chairman of the US Fed, in the form of a third round of quantitative easing when the bank meets on 12 and 13 September. The closely watched Jackson Hole conference at the end of August will also provide Bernanke with the opportunity to prepare the market.
Gold bulls believe QE3 and similar stimulus programs in the crisis-ridden Eurozone and slowing China will restore the yellow metal's status as an inflation hedge and wealth preserver.
Flooding markets with cheap money would also hurt the dollar, further boosting the metal's price.