June 12, 2020 / 1:57 AM / a month ago

PRECIOUS-Gold steady as firmer dollar offsets risk-off sentiment

    June 12 (Reuters) - Gold prices held steady on Friday as
downward pressure from a stronger dollar countered rising
safe-haven demand supported by gloomy economic projections and
renewed fears over a second wave in COVID-19 infections.
    * Spot gold        was flat at $1,727.24 per ounce, as of
1256 GMT. U.S. gold futures        fell 0.4% to $1,733.30.
    * On Thursday, spot gold fell 0.5% on a stronger dollar.
    * The dollar index        inched up 0.1%, after rising 0.8%
in the previous session, making gold more expensive for holders
of other currencies.       
    * Asian equities are set to tumble after Wall Street stocks
slid over growing concerns about a resurgence in coronavirus
    * The three major U.S. stock indexes fell over 5% on
Thursday, posting their worst day since mid-March.
    * A recent spike in cases in about a dozen U.S. states
partially reflects increased testing, but many of those states
are also seeing rising hospitalizations.             
    * U.S. jobless claims declined last week, but continuing
claims are at an astoundingly high 20.9 million.             
    * On Wednesday, Fed officials announced the need to keep the
key interest rate near zero through at least 2022, and that it
would be a "long road" to recovery.                 
    * Large stimulus measures and low interest rates tend to
support gold, which is often considered a hedge against
inflation and currency debasement.
    * Gold has rallied about 19% since touching an over
three-month low of $1,450.98 on March 16.
    * SPDR Gold Trust      , the world's largest gold-backed
exchange-traded fund, said its holdings rose 0.5% to 1,135.05
tonnes on Thursday.          
    * Palladium        was unchanged at $1,921.22 per ounce,
while silver        was down 0.4% to $17.64, and platinum       
rose 0.2% to $812.37.

0600  UK      GDP Estimate MM, YY         April
0645  France  CPI (EU Norm) Final MM, YY  May
1200  India   Industrial Output YY        April
1400  US      U Mich Sentiment Prelim     June

 (Reporting by Harshith Aranya in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh
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