May 18, 2018 / 3:46 AM / in a year

PRECIOUS-Gold prices slip as surging US Treasury yields lift dollar

    * Spot gold down over 2 pct for the week
    * Dollar index near five-month high 
    * Benchmark U.S. yields at 7-year peak

 (Adds comment, updates prices)
    By Apeksha Nair
    BENGALURU, May 18 (Reuters) - Gold prices edged down on
Friday to near their lowest levels this year, pressured by a
firm U.S. dollar amid surging U.S. Treasury yields.
    Spot gold        was down about 0.1 percent at $1,289.35 per
ounce at 0657 GMT, after hitting its lowest since Dec. 27 in the
previous session at $1,285.41.
    The metal was heading for its biggest weekly decline since
early December.
    U.S. gold futures         for June delivery were 0.1 percent
lower at $1,288.60 per ounce.
    The dollar held near a five-month peak against a basket of
currencies on Friday thanks to the benchmark U.S. Treasury yield
            topping a seven-year high.         
    "The 10-year U.S. yields put the dollar on a firm foot and
put pressure on metals and gold," said a Hong Kong-based trader,
adding that some "risk-on" sentiment in markets today was also
adding pressure. 
    A stronger greenback makes dollar-denominated gold more
expensive for users of other currencies, while higher U.S.
yields dampen the appeal of non-yielding bullion.   
    "$1,285 has been good support for the past couple of days,
so that's the first support we'll see if it (spot gold) can
hold," the trader said. He declined to be identified as he was
not authorised to speak with media.
    Meanwhile, Asian stocks were treading water on Friday as
investors kept a cautious watch on developments in U.S.-China
trade negotiations.            
    U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday that China had
become "very spoiled" on trade with the United States and cast
doubt on the success of his efforts to rebalance the
relationship with Beijing as high-stakes U.S.-China negotiations
opened in Washington.                 
    Trump sought on Thursday to placate North Korea's leader Kim
Jong Un after Pyongyang threatened to scrap an unprecedented
    "Failure of the U.S. to reach any trade deal with China, as
Trump has already indicated that there may not be a favourable
outcome, could stimulate some demand for gold," said Naeem
Aslam, chief markets analyst at Think Markets.
    Spot gold still targets $1,302 per ounce as it has
stabilized around a support at $1,287, Reuters technical analyst
Wang Tao said.             
    In other metals, silver        was little changed at $16.43
an ounce.
    Palladium        rose 0.1 percent to $979.15, while platinum
       was 0.4-percent lower at $885.24 per ounce after hitting
a five-month low at $879 on Thursday.
    However, all three of those metals were heading for weekly

 (Reporting by Apeksha Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Joseph
Radford and Gopakumar Warrier)
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