June 30, 2020 / 1:50 AM / 3 days ago

PRECIOUS-Gold set for best quarter in 4 years on virus fears

    June 30 (Reuters) - Gold prices held steady on Tuesday and
were heading for their biggest quarterly rise in more than four
years as fears over rising coronavirus cases around the world
boosted demand for the safe-haven metal.
                    
    FUNDAMENTALS    
    * Spot gold        was mostly unchanged at $1,770.77 per
ounce by 0052 GMT, just $8.29 shy of a near eight-year high of
$1,779.06, hit last week.
    * Bullion, with more than 12% gains this quarter, is on
track for its best quarter since end-March 2016. Gold was also
headed for its third straight monthly gain. 
    * U.S. gold futures        were flat at $1,781.20.
    * Confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide exceeded 10 million and
deaths surpassed 500,000 over the weekend.             
    * Texas, Florida and California are among U.S. states to
reverse reopenings and reclose businesses such as bars to slow
the spread of the coronavirus.                          
    * U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said on Monday
the outlook for the world's biggest economy is "extraordinarily
uncertain" and will depend both on containing the coronavirus
and on government efforts to support the recovery.             
    * Gold is largely considered as a safe investment during
times of political and financial uncertainty.
    * Meanwhile, an upbeat U.S. data spurred fresh optimism on
the world's largest economy and lifted investor sentiment
towards riskier assets.                         
    * In Asia, China's factory activity expanded at a faster
pace in June, beating expectations, while activity in the
country's services sector expanded at its fastest pace in seven
months, official data showed .                          
    * Palladium        eased 0.1% to $1,902.68 per ounce, while
platinum        rose 0.1% to $806.22 and silver        lost 0.3%
at $17.81.
    
    DATA/EVENTS (GMT)
0600  UK      GDP QQ, YY               Q1
1400  US      Consumer Confidence      June

 (Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh
Kuber)
  
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