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PRECIOUS-Gold steadies as focus turns to Fed meeting

    April 27 (Reuters) - Gold prices were little changed on
Tuesday, ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's monetary policy
meeting, while palladium was pinned below a record peak scaled
in the previous session.
    
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold        was steady at $1,780.86 per ounce by 0057
GMT. U.S. gold futures        were little changed at $1,780.10
per ounce.
    * Palladium        was steady at $2,924.93 per ounce, after
hitting an all-time high of $2,941 on Monday.
    * The dollar index        inched up against its rivals,
making gold more expensive for other currency holders.       
    * Market participants are now looking at the U.S. Fed's
two-day policy meeting, which ends on Wednesday, and while no
major policy changes are expected, investors will pay close
attention to Chairman Jerome Powell's outlook on the economy.
            
    * Japan's central bank is expected to maintain its massive
stimulus on Tuesday and project inflation missing its 2% target
for years to come, as fresh curbs to combat a spike in COVID-19
cases overshadow the boost to growth from solid global demand.
                         
    * New orders for key U.S.-made capital goods rose solidly in
March and shipments surged, cementing expectations that economic
growth accelerated in the first quarter as massive government
aid and improving public health boosted demand.             
    * More than 147.23 million people have been reported to be
infected by the novel coronavirus globally and 3,249,168​ have
died, according to a Reuters tally.             
    * India ordered its armed forces on Monday to help tackle
surging new coronavirus infections, as nations pledged urgent
medical aid to try to contain an emergency overwhelming the
country's hospitals.             
    * Silver        fell 0.1% to $26.19 per ounce. Platinum
       was up 0.3% at $1,247.90. 
            
DATA/EVENTS (GMT)
1400  US     Consumer Confidence  April
 N/A  Japan  JP BOJ Rate Decision April 27 
Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee
starts its two-day meeting on interest rates

 (Reporting by Shreyansi Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna
Chandra Eluri)
  
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