May 13, 2020 / 1:25 AM / 24 days ago

REFILE-PRECIOUS-Gold gains as virus resurgence fears dampen risk appetite

 (Corrects paragraph 1 spelling of "coronavirus")
    May 13 (Reuters) - Gold gained on Wednesday as concerns that
a second wave of coronavirus infections may be emerging in many
countries weighed on riskier assets.
        
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold        climbed 0.1% to $1,704.23 an ounce by
0030 GMT. U.S. gold futures        gained 0.1% to $1,708.10. 
    * Asian equities were set to pull back on heightened
concerns about coronavirus infections and the timing for a
vaccine, while top White House infectious disease expert said
lifting of lockdowns could lead to additional outbreaks.
                        
    * Chinese health authorities on Tuesday called for vigilance
to be maintained against the virus as new clusters emerge, even
though the peak of the epidemic has passed.             
    * The dollar was on the defensive against its rivals as
traders looked to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's
speech amid rising speculation the United States could one day
adopt negative interest rates.       
    * Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday
unveiled a $3 trillion-plus coronavirus relief package, only to
see the measure flatly rejected by Senate Republicans.
            
    * Massive stimulus measures support gold as it is used as a
hedge against inflation and currency debasement, while it is
also seen as a safe-haven asset during times of economic and
political uncertainties.
    * U.S. businesses and households are going to need more
fiscal support to get through what will likely be a longer
period of recovery from the shutdown than initially expected,
Federal Reserve policymakers said.             
    * Underscoring the deeper economic impact of the epidemic,
U.S. consumer prices dropped by the most since the Great
Recession in April, weighed down by a plunge in demand for
gasoline and services including airline travel.             
    * The International Monetary Fund's managing director said
it was "very likely" the Fund would cut global growth forecasts
further as the pandemic was hitting many economies harder than
previously projected.             
    * British retail spending plunged by nearly a fifth in April
as the government's lockdown hammered the sector, and a broader
measure of consumer spending tumbled by more than a third,
surveys showed.                         
    * Highlighting investor appetite for bullion, SPDR Gold
Trust       holdings, the world's largest gold-backed
exchange-traded fund, rose 0.24% to 1,083.66 tonnes on Tuesday.
         
    * Palladium        slipped 0.6% to $1,848.93 per ounce,
while silver        gained 0.6% to $15.49 and platinum       
rose 0.8% to $759.43. 

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)
0600  UK   GDP Estimate 3M/3M, MM, YY  March
0600  UK   Manufacturing Output MM     March
0600  UK   GDP Prelim QQ, YY           Q1    

 (Reporting by K. Sathya Narayanan in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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