Jan 4 Gold prices eased on Wednesday after
hitting a three-week high in the previous session, with the U.S.
dollar hovering near 14-year peaks against a basket of major
* Spot gold was down 0.2 percent at $1,156.96 an
ounce by 0051 GMT. It marked its highest since Dec. 14 on
Tuesday at $1,163.52.
* U.S. gold futures fell 0.4 percent to $1,157.70
* The dollar index, which measures the greenback
against a basket of currencies, was at 103.34 after climbing to
103.82 the previous day, its strongest since December 2002.
* Holdings of the SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest
gold-backed exchange-traded fund, dropped 1.01 percent to 813.87
tonnes on Tuesday.
* U.S. factory activity accelerated to a two-year high in
December amid a surge in new orders and rapidly rising raw
material prices, indicating that some of the drag on
manufacturing from prolonged dollar strength and a slump in oil
prices was fading.
* Other data on Tuesday showed U.S. construction spending
hit a 10-1/2-year high in November, providing a boost to a
fourth-quarter economic growth estimate. The reports suggested
President-elect Donald Trump would inherit a strong economy,
with a labour market that is near full employment, from the
* China's factory activity picked up more than expected in
December as demand accelerated, with output reaching a near
six-year high, a private business survey showed on Tuesday,
giving the manufacturing sector a solid boost heading into 2017.
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* The U.S. dollar held near 14-year peaks on Wednesday as an
abundance of upbeat global economic data boosted Wall Street and
signs of quickening inflation dented fixed-income debt.
* Oil prices edged up on Wednesday, recovering some losses
from the previous day.
DATA AHEAD (GMT)
Euro Zone 0900 Markit Service Final PMI December
Euro Zone 1000 Inflation Flash December
U.S. 1200 Mortgage Market index weekly
U.S. 1355 Redbook weekly
U.S. 1445 ISM-New York index December
U.S. 1830 All car, truck sales December
(Reporting by Swati Verma in Bengaluru; Editing by Joseph