October 3, 2017 / 4:12 AM / a year ago

PRECIOUS-Gold falls to 7-week low as dollar firms

    * Dollar index near 7-week high
    * Spot gold may find support around $1,260-$1,263/oz

 (Updates prices)
    By Apeksha Nair
    Oct 3 (Reuters) - Gold prices were little changed after
marking a 7-week low on Tuesday, as equities and the dollar were
buoyed in Asian trade by upbeat economic data and strong U.S.
treasury yields.
    Spot gold        was down 0.1 percent at $1,269.71 an ounce
by 0713 GMT, after earlier touching its lowest since mid-August
at $1,267.76.
    U.S. gold futures         for December delivery shed 0.3
percent to $1,272.60 an ounce.
    "Gold no doubt is struggling for the moment as at least
three variables are arrayed against it, namely, a stronger
dollar, a higher rate environment and possibly a reduction in
tensions with North Korea if tentative contacts revealed over
the weekend amount to something," INTL FCStone analyst Edward
Meir said in a note.
    "We see gold possibly getting to a low of $1,245 before
running into some credible support."
    The dollar on Tuesday rose versus the yen        and climbed
to its highest since mid-August against a basket of major
currencies       , extending gains from the previous session
when it rose on higher U.S. Treasury yields and strong
manufacturing data.                    
    Proposed U.S. tax reforms and growing odds of a December
interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve have also helped
support the greenback.                           
    Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan on Monday said the
central bank would need to "look hard" at whether it should
raise rates in December, while Minneapolis Fed President Neel
Kashkari earlier that day said he would want to wait on rate
    Higher interest rates tend to boost the dollar and push bond
yields up, adding pressure on greenback-denominated,
non-yielding gold.
    Meanwhile, the White House on Monday ruled out talks with
North Korea except to discuss the fate of Americans held there,
again appearing to rebuke Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who
said Washington was directly communicating with Pyongyang on its
nuclear and missile programmes.             
    Spot gold may find support in a zone of $1,260-$1,263 per
ounce, and then start a decent bounce, Reuters technicals
analyst Wang Tao said.             
    In other precious metals, silver        had edged down 0.1
percent to $16.53 an ounce after earlier matching its lowest
since Aug.9, which it originally hit yesterday.    
    Platinum        and palladium        were both 0.2-percent
higher at $912.40 and $911.50 an ounce respectively, having hit
price parity for the first time in 16 years last

 (Reporting by Apeksha Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Joseph
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