July 27, 2018 / 1:37 AM / 5 months ago

PRECIOUS-Gold prices inch up, investors shift focus to upcoming US economic data

    BENGALURU, July 27 (Reuters) - Gold prices edged up on
Friday but stayed close to one-year lows, with investors waiting
for data later in the day on U.S. economic growth.
               
    FUNDAMENTALS  
    * Spot gold        was up 0.04 percent at $1,222.70 an ounce
at 0102 GMT. The metal was set to fall for a third week, down
about 0.7 percent.
    * U.S. gold futures         were 0.3-percent lower at
$1,222.10 an ounce.   
    * New orders for key U.S.-made capital goods increased more
than expected in June and shipments surged, pointing to solid
growth in business spending on equipment in the second quarter.
                         
    * The dollar stood tall against its peers on Friday, having
regained traction as the euro slid sharply after the European
Central Bank offered little in the way of surprises over its
planned timing to move away from its accommodative monetary
policy.                    
    * The U.S. Commerce Department will continue its probe into
whether auto imports pose a national security risk despite
ongoing trade talks with the European Union, but President
Donald Trump asked that no action be taken at this time,
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Thursday.             
    * As trade tensions escalate between Washington and Beijing,
the U.S. Senate quietly passed legislation on Thursday that
would lower trade barriers on hundreds of items made in China.
            
    * The United States signaled on Thursday it is set to push
ahead on trade talks with Canada and Mexico after agreeing to
suspend hostilities over tariffs with Europe in a fragile deal
that may clear the way for renewed pressure on China.
            
    * Trump on Thursday threatened to slap "large sanctions" on
Turkey unless it freed an American pastor, prompting an angry
response from Ankara and further escalating tensions between the
two NATO allies.             
    * Leaders of the BRICS bloc of emerging economies, meeting
in the wake of tariff threats by Trump, signed a declaration
supporting an open and inclusive multilateral trading system
under World Trade Organisation rules at their summit in South
Africa on Thursday.             
    * India's Sun Gold and China National Gold are launching a
joint gold mining project in Russia's Siberia region, the two
companies said in a joint statement during the Johannesburg
summit of BRICS member states.             
    * China's net gold imports via main conduit Hong Kong jumped
40.3 percent in June from the previous month to their highest
since March 2017, data showed on Thursday.             
    * Hundreds of South African gold mine workers were rescued
and over 100 treated for smoke inhalation after an underground
fire, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said on Thursday.
            
    

 (Reporting by Karen Rodrigues in Bengaluru
Editing by Joseph Radford)
  
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