July 8, 2020 / 1:21 AM / a month ago

PRECIOUS-Gold steady near highest since November 2011 on flight to safety

    July 8 (Reuters) - Gold held firm near a more than
eight-year high on Wednesday, as safe-haven demand was bolstered
by worries over surging COVID-19 cases and hopes of more
stimulus measures to combat the economic blow.
                            
    FUNDAMENTALS    
    * Spot gold        was steady at $1,793.56 per ounce by 0031
GMT after hitting its highest since November 2011.
    * U.S. gold futures        eased 0.2% to $1,806.30 per
ounce.
    * The U.S. coronavirus outbreak crossed a grim new milestone
of over 3 million confirmed cases on Tuesday as more states
reported record numbers of new infections, and Florida faced an
impending shortage of intensive care unit hospital
beds.            
    * Lockdown measures were reimposed in Australia's
second-biggest city, Melbourne, as officials scramble to contain
the coronavirus outbreak.             
    * Three Fed officials expressed concern that the surge in
infections threatens to pinch consumer spending and job gains
just as some stimulus programmes are set to expire.
    * One Fed policymaker pledged more support ahead from the
U.S. central bank.             
    * Gold tends to benefit from widespread stimulus measures
from central banks because it is widely viewed as a hedge
against inflation and currency debasement.
    * Indicative of sentiment, SPDR Gold Trust      , the
world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its
holdings rose 0.66% to 1,199.36 tonnes on Tuesday.          
    * Asian stocks were set for a mixed open, as an increase in
new coronavirus cases in some parts of the world cast doubts
over the economic recovery.            
    * The dollar index        rose 0.1% against a basket of
major currencies.       
    * Palladium        fell 0.1% to $1,914.06 per ounce,
platinum        dropped 0.5% to $831.17 and silver        lost
0.2% to $18.26.
    
    DATA/EVENTS (GMT)
1900  US      Federal Reserve issues Consumer Installment
                  Credit for May

 (Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu
Sahu)
  
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