August 1, 2019 / 10:51 AM / 3 months ago

PRECIOUS-Gold hits two-week low on doubts over further U.S. rate cuts

* Silver dips to two-week low, platinum slips

* Palladium hits over one-month trough

* Investors await U.S. jobs report (Updates prices)

By Swati Verma

Aug 1 (Reuters) - Gold slipped to a two-week low on Thursday, a day after the U.S. Federal Reserve cut interest rates for the first time in a decade but dampened expectations of future rate reductions, which sent the dollar to a 26-month peak.

Spot gold fell 0.6% to $1,404.81 per ounce as of 1215 GMT, after falling to its lowest since July 17 at $1,402.15. U.S. gold futures slid 1.5% to $1,404.90 an ounce.

U.S. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell sent "mixed messages" with his forward guidance when he cut U.S. rates by 25 basis points, the first cut since the global financial crisis in 2008, FXTM analyst Lukman Otunuga said.

"The key takeaway that is causing gold to trade lower is that Powell said it's not the beginning of a long series of rate cuts. Markets are now questioning whether it's a one-and-done (step)," he added.

After the Fed comments, the dollar index rose to its highest since May 2017, making the non-yielding bullion expensive for holders of other currencies.

"The dollar has broken out on the charts and looks like it is going to push higher still, yet another reason to pursue caution when it comes to the long side in the precious group," INTL FCStone analyst Edward Meir said in a note.

Gold posted its third straight month of gains in July, having reached its highest in six-years at $1,452.60 on July 19.

On the technical side gold was still holding above the psychologically important $1,400 level.

Lower interest rates and resurgent investor and central bank buying are expected to help gold prices cement recent gains and hold above $1,400 an ounce next year, a Reuters poll showed on Thursday.

"In the long term, gold is still supported even though the Fed may disappoint markets, other major central banks across the globe are expected to cut rates," Otunuga said.

"Future rate cuts will be contingent on economic data from the United States and U.S.-China trade developments."

Investors are now awaiting the release of U.S. non-farm payrolls data on Friday.

"Even if gold were to come under further pressure as a result of a good U.S. labour market report ... , we would regard this as 'merely' a correction within an intact upswing," Commerzbank analysts said in a note.

Elsewhere, silver was down 1.7% at $15.98 per ounce, after touching a two-week low of $15.88 earlier in the session.

Platinum was 1% lower at $850.95 an ounce, after falling to its lowest since July 23 at $845, while palladium dropped about 2% to $1,485.89, its lowest since June 21. (Reporting by Swati Verma and Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru Editing by Edmund Blair and Alexandra Hudson)

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