Gold steady as investors eye Fed policy meet

Spot gold was little changed at $1,792.86 per ounce

  
Gold bars are seen in this picture illustration taken at the Czech National Bank in Prague January 31, 2011.

Gold bars are seen in this picture illustration taken at the Czech National Bank in Prague January 31, 2011.

REUTERS/Petr Josek

Gold prices were steady on Thursday as investors awaited signals on the Federal Reserve's timeline for tapering pandemic-era stimulus measures, after softer-than-expected U.S. inflation data fuelled some uncertainty.

FUNDAMENTALS

Spot gold was little changed at $1,792.86 per ounce by 0116 GMT.

Prices fell 0.6% on Wednesday, its biggest one-day decline in a week as U.S. Treasury yields ticked higher.

U.S. gold futures were flat at $1,795.00.

The Federal Open Market Committee's two-day policy meeting is due next week and is expected to provide guidance on when the U.S. central bank will start withdrawing its asset purchases.

Gold is viewed as a hedge against the inflation and currency debasement likely from widespread stimulus. The Fed's tapering could tackle both those conditions, diminishing gold's appeal.

Production at U.S. factories slowed sharply in August as Hurricane Ida forced plant closures and an ongoing microchip shortage curbed motor vehicle output, but manufacturing remains strong amid lean inventories.

The New York Fed's business survey showed a higher-than-expected reading.

Real interest rates are puzzlingly low around the world, European Central Bank board member Isabel Schnabel said on Wednesday, arguing that investors may be overestimating the impact of the Delta variant of the coronavirus on the economy.

Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, fell 0.2% to 998.46 tonnes on Wednesday from 1,000.21 tonnes on Tuesday.

Russia produced 135.5 tonnes of gold in the first six months of 2021, down from 138.1 in the same period last year, the finance ministry said on Wednesday.

Silver was steady at $23.83 per ounce.

Platinum rose 0.5% to $951.81, having hit an over nine-month low on Wednesday.

Palladium climbed 1.1% to $2,025.52. DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 1230 US Initial Jobless Clm Weekly 1230 US Philly Fed Business Indx Sept 1230 US Retail Sales MM Aug (Reporting by Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath)

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