July 5, 2017 / 1:20 AM / 3 months ago

PRECIOUS-Gold inches up on N. Korea tensions, Fed minutes in focus

    BENGALURU, July 5 (Reuters) - Gold prices edged up on
Wednesday as tensions on the Korean peninsula stoked safe-haven
demand for the metal, while the release of minutes from the U.S.
Federal Reserve's last meeting was also in focus.
         
    FUNDAMENTALS    
    * Spot gold        had risen 0.18 percent to $1,225.81 per
ounce by 0057 GMT. 
    * U.S. gold futures         for August delivery climbed 0.52
percent to $1,225.50 per ounce.
    * North Korea said on Wednesday it had conducted a test of a
newly developed intercontinental ballistic missile that can
carry a large and heavy nuclear warhead, triggering a call by
Washington for global action to hold Pyongyang accountable for
its pursuit of nuclear weapons.             
    * The Pentagon said on Tuesday it was prepared to defend the
United States and its allies against the growing threat from
North Korea.             
    * Asian share markets got off to a subdued start on
Wednesday amid the simmering tensions on the Korean peninsula.
           
    * The dollar slipped against the yen on Wednesday, while the
Canadian dollar held firm after the nation's central bank chief
backed an interest rate increase.       
    * Bank of England official Ian McCafferty stuck to his view
that interest rates should rise now in a newspaper interview
published on Tuesday, saying that the economy has not slowed by
as much as predicted.             
    *  A hike in taxes on gold sales in India could stoke
under-the-counter buying and drive up appetite for precious
metal smuggled into the country, where millions of people store
big chunks of their wealth in bullion and jewellery.
            
    * Spot gold        is expected to test support at $1,217 per
ounce, with a good chance of breaking below this level and
falling more towards the next support at $1,211, according to
Reuters technical analyst, Wang Tao.
    
    DATA AHEAD (GMT) 
     0145  China       Caixin services PMI          Jun 
     0750  France      Markit services PMI          Jun 
     0755  Germany     Markit services PMI          Jun 
     0800  Euro zone   Markit services PMI final    Jun 
     0900  Euro zone   Retail sales                 May 
     1345  U.S.        ISM-New York index           Jun 
     1400  U.S.        Factory orders               May 
     1800  Federal Reserve to release minutes from June meeting 
    

    
 (Reporting by Nithin Prasad in Bengaluru; Editing by Joseph
Radford)
  

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