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PRECIOUS-Gold prices rangebound as strong U.S. data fuels risk-on sentiment
Published at 20/01/2020 at 01:57

Jan 20 (Reuters) - Gold traded in a tight range on Monday as strong U.S. economic data fuelled investors' appetite for riskier assets and dented the metal's safe-haven appeal.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Spot gold ticked up 0.1% to $1,558.47 per ounce by 0134 GMT, after a near 0.4% drop last week. U.S. gold futures

were down 0.1% to $1,558.10.

* Asian stocks surged close to a 20-month high, supported by an extended rally in global stocks on Wall Street and solid U.S. economic data.

* U.S. homebuilding surged to a 13-year high last month as activity increased across the board, while production at factories increased for a second straight month, data showed on Friday.

* U.S. President Donald Trump sought on Sunday to assure American farmers and ranchers hit by a protracted tariff war with China that a trade agreement he signed with Beijing will lead to major purchases of U.S. agricultural products.

* Chinese Vice Premier Liu He said Beijing and Washington signing the Phase 1 deal had created a beneficial condition for future Sino-U.S. relations, according to a state media Xinhua report.

* Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Patrick Harker said on Friday that a robust labour market was boosting consumer confidence and lifting the U.S. economy, despite headwinds such as a global slowdown and trade uncertainty.

* The Turkish central bank said on Saturday it had decreased the upper limit of holding standard gold to 20% from 30% of lira reserve requirements in a move to support financial stability and bring out gold savings into the economy.

* Speculators cut their bullish positions in COMEX gold contracts in the week to Jan. 14, data showed.

* Holdings of the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund SPDR Gold Trust rose 2.20% to 898.82 tonnes on Friday.

* Physical gold purchases gathered steam ahead of the Lunar New Year celebrations in China and Singapore, while demand in India dwindled last week, encouraging retailers to offer more discounts.

* Palladium was flat at $2,479.73 an ounce. The auto-catalyst metal hit a record high of $2,537.06 on Friday.

* A squeeze in ready availability of automotive metal palladium has driven up already record-high prices by 25% in just two weeks, accelerating a four-year rally and stoking expectations for further gains, analysts said.

* Silver edged higher by 0.2% to $18.03 per ounce, while platinum rose 0.6% to $1,023.55. DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 0700 Germany Producer prices MM, YY Dec -- Japan Bank of Japan holds monetary policy meeting

(Reporting by Asha Sistla in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

((Asha.Sistla@thomsonreuters.com; If within U.S. +1 646 223 8780; outside U.S. +91 80 6749 5072; Reuters Messaging: Reuters Messaging: asha.sistla.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))