We saw modest losses in the precious metals group on Tuesday, with palladium being the sole exception. Once again, trading conditions were very quiet and so most of the attention was focused on the dollar as the key driver for gold prices. The greenback strengthened over the course of the day, both on account of surging US equity markets, coupled with speculation that President Trump could appoint one of the hawks to be Federal Reserve chief. In an unusual lunch with Senate Republicans, the President asked for a show of hands as to who he should nominate and apparently many seemed to favor Stanford University’s John Taylor, seen as more hawkish then the current frontrunner, Fed Governor Jerome Powell. Taylor is said to favor a rule-based approach to setting interest rates as outlined in his ‘Taylor Rule’ proposal.