PRECIOUS-Gold languishes near 7-month low on Fed worries

Thu Feb 21, 2013 6:23am IST

SINGAPORE, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Gold rebounded half a percent
on Thursday, but remained near a seven-month low hit in the
previous session on worries that the Federal Reserve may stop or
slow its bond buying programme.
    Gold fell together with other commodities, amid speculation
that a hedge fund had been forced to liquidate positions across
metals and oil markets. 
    
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold gained nearly half a percent to $1,569.26
an ounce by 0034 GMT, after falling to $1,558.24 in the previous
session, its lowest since last July. It fell 2.6 percent on
Wednesday, posting the biggest daily drop in a year.
    * U.S. gold fell 0.6 percent to $1,569.20.
    * A number of Federal Reserve officials think the central
bank might have to slow or stop buying bonds before seeing the
pickup in hiring the program is designed to deliver, according
to minutes of the central bank's policy meeting last month.
 
    * India's trade ministry has recommended suspension of gold
jewellery imports from Thailand, which are taxed at only 1
percent under a bilateral agreement while such imports from
other countries are taxed at 10 percent. 
    * Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) said persistent
labour unrest is jeopardising investment in South Africa and
warned that talks with government and unions may not lead to a
reduction in its planned job cuts. 
    * Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest
gold-backed exchange-traded fund, slumped 1.57 percent from the
previous session to 1,299.164 tonnes on Feb 20, the lowest in
more than five months. 
    * Spot silver was nearly flat at $28.55, having
fallen to a six-month low of $28.26 in the previous session.
    * Spot platinum extended losses to the third straight
session, down 0.7 percent to $1,632.24. Spot palladium 
fell half a percent to $733.97, after falling more than 3
percent in the previous session -- its sharpest daily decline in
nearly four months.
    * For the top stories on metals and other news, click
, or 
    
    MARKET NEWS
    * The U.S. dollar held firm on Thursday, having enjoyed its
biggest one-day gain in seven months against a currency basket
as commodities and U.S. equities slid on rumours of a hedge fund
in trouble. 
    * U.S. stocks fell the most in three months and a key gauge
of market volatility spiked on Wednesday after minutes from the
U.S. Federal Reserve's most recent meeting suggested the central
bank may slow or stop buying bonds sooner than expected. 
    
    DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

 0758 France    Markit Manufacturing Flash PMI                 
 0828 Germany   Markit Manufacturing Flash PMI                
 0858 Euro zone Markit Manufacturing Flash PMI                
 1330 U.S.      CPI                                           
 1330 U.S.      Weekly jobless claims                         
 1358 U.S.      Markit Manufacturing Flash PMI                
 1500 U.S.      Philly Fed business index                     
 1500 U.S.      Existing home sales                          
 1500 U.S.      Leading indicators                             
    
    PRICES
   Precious metals prices 0034 GMT
  Metal             Last    Change  Pct chg  YTD pct chg    Volume
  Spot Gold        1569.26    6.97   +0.45     -6.29
  Spot Silver        28.55    0.02   +0.07     -5.71
  Spot Platinum    1632.24  -12.01   -0.73      6.33
  Spot Palladium    733.97   -3.53   -0.48      6.07
  COMEX GOLD APR3  1569.20   -8.80   -0.56     -6.36         5483
  COMEX SILVER MAR3  28.53   -0.09   -0.32     -5.62         1460
  Euro/Dollar       1.3282
  Dollar/Yen         93.71
  COMEX gold and silver contracts show the most active months
   
    
    

 (Reporting by Rujun Shen; Editing by Richard Pullin)

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