April 29, 2020 / 6:25 AM / a month ago

PRECIOUS-Gold ticks up as dollar weakens; Fed decision eyed

 (Updates prices)
    * U.S. Fed policy decision due at 1800 GMT
    * U.S. consumer confidence tumbles to near six-year low
    * For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread,
open tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7
 in an external browser

    By Shreyansi Singh
    April 29 (Reuters) - Gold prices edged up on Wednesday as a
weaker dollar eclipsed optimism over plans for a gradual easing
of coronavirus curbs, while investors awaited a policy decision
by the U.S. Federal Reserve due later in the day.
    Spot gold        rose 0.2% to $1,711.31 per ounce by 0539
GMT after three straight sessions of falls. U.S. gold futures
        climbed 0.3% to $1,727.50 per ounce.
    Making greenback-denominated gold more appealing to
investors using other currencies, the dollar        eased as the
slowing coronavirus' spread and moves to re-open economies
boosted risk appetite, though there was caution ahead of the Fed
decision.      
    "There's a movement out of the dollar because there's a lot
of uncertainty around an event like the Fed meeting, and that's
supporting a little bit of a lift in gold on an intra-day
basis," said IG Markets analyst Kyle Rodda.
    "We've got a lot of major events on the economic and
corporate calendar in the next few days," Rodda said, adding
that this was leading to heightened risks in the equities
market.
    Asian shares rose for a third straight session in cautious
trading and oil prices jumped on hopes demand will pick up as
countries look to  ease restrictions.                         
     
    Many countries tiptoed out of lockdowns and more parts of
the United States looked set to restart businesses.            
                
   "With central banks increasing liquidity in financial
markets, low interest rates and rising money supply are all
factors that are bullish for gold in the longer term," Phillip
Futures said in a note.
    The Fed has slashed interest rates, resumed bond-buying and
backstopped credit markets. Its statement on Wednesday could
begin to clarify how long it intends to leave rates near zero.
             
    Gold tends to benefit from widespread stimulus measures as
it is often seen as a hedge against inflation and currency
debasement.
    U.S. consumer confidence tumbled to near a six-year low in
April as restrictions disrupted economic activity and threw
millions of Americans out of work.                          
    Drawing the curtains on one of the most venerable names in
precious metals trading, Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank)
         told staff on Tuesday it would close its metals
business, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
            
    Palladium        rose 3% to $1,974.33 an ounce platinum
       gained 0.4% to $775.18 per ounce, silver        was up
0.1% to $15.20 per ounce.

 (Reporting by Shreyansi Singh in Bengaluru; editing by
Uttaresh.V and Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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