April 1, 2019 / 4:12 AM / in 3 months

PRECIOUS-Gold slips as positive China data boosts risk assets

* Gold specs raise net long positions for 2nd week

* Global gold demand will rise to 4-yr high in 2019-Metals Focus

* U.S. February retail sales data due at 1230 GMT

* GRAPHIC-2019 asset returns: tmsnrt.rs/2jvdmXl (Updates prices)

By K. Sathya Narayanan

April 1 (Reuters) - Gold prices slipped on Monday as upbeat Chinese economic data and signs of progress in Sino-U.S. trade talks eased some concerns about a slowdown in economic growth and boosted appetite for riskier assets.

Spot gold was down about 0.2 percent at $1,290.01 per ounce by 0750 GMT, after touching its lowest since March 8 at $1,286.35 on Friday.

U.S. gold futures fell 0.3 percent at $1,294.80 an ounce.

Share markets rallied after data showed factory activity in China unexpectedly grew for the first time in four months in March.

“The most extreme part of the global growth slowdown panic has subsided a little bit and the Chinese data is responsible for that, but it is a single data point which should be backed by more data,” said Kyle Rodda, a market analyst with IG Markets in Melbourne.

“We are getting a lot of data from across the globe (this week) so the global growth story and the fears related to that will be tested in the very short term.”

The U.S. retail sales and manufacturing PMI data from the United States is due later in the day.

“Though Asian PMIs have demonstrated for respite in the current term, we opine that a synchronized economic slowdown remains in place in lieu of weakness in both domestic and foreign demand,” Phillip Futures wrote in a note.

“The precious metal though facing bearish pressures will receive strong support from growing economic headwinds.”

Global demand for gold in 2019 will rise to the highest in four years as higher consumption by jewellers offsets a fall in purchases by central banks, an industry report said on Monday.

Investors are also keeping a close watch on the trade talks between the United States and China, set to resume later this week in Washington with a Chinese delegation led by Vice Premier Liu He.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday that negotiations with China were going very well after top trade officials from both the countries wrapped up in Beijing.

“Though we’ve seen some kind of retracement in gold, it remains very much supported around the $1,260 and $1,280 an ounce level,” said Hitesh Jain, vice president, Yes Securities.

Indicating investor sentiment for bullion, speculators increased net long position in COMEX gold for the second straight week in the week to March 26, data showed on Friday.

Among other precious metals, spot palladium was down 0.1 percent at $1,382.86 an ounce, having declined more than 11 percent last week.

Silver was down 0.2 percent at $15.11 an ounce, while platinum rose 0.5 percent to $849.47 an ounce. (Reporting by K. Sathya Narayanan in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin and Subhranshu Sahu)

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