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PRECIOUS-Gold rises over 1% on weaker dollar, U.S. stimulus cheer
Published at 01/03/2021 at 08:06

* For gold, $1,760-$1,765 level a key hurdle - analyst

* Specs cut bullish positions in gold, silver - CFTC

* SPDR Gold Trust holdings fell 0.6% on Friday

(Updates prices)

By Shreyansi Singh

March 1 (Reuters) - Gold prices rose more than 1% on Monday, recovering from a more than eight-month low touched in the previous session, as the dollar weakened and the U.S. House of Representatives passed a massive $1.9 trillion stimulus package.

Spot gold was up 1.4% at $1,757.80 per ounce by 0741 GMT, after rising as much as 1.5% to $1,759.53 earlier in the session.

U.S. gold futures rose 1.5% to $1,755.30.

Gold prices tumbled 3% on Friday, posting their biggest monthly drop since November 2016 in February, due to a spike in U.S. bond yields.

"A reversal of the higher yield trend and a weaker dollar are allowing gold to move higher," said Stephen Innes, chief global market strategist at financial services firm Axi, adding that the U.S. stimulus package news was also supporting bullion prices.

U.S. President Joe Biden scored his first legislative win as the House of Representatives passed his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package early Saturday.

The dollar slipped from a one-week high hit in the previous session, raising gold's appeal for holders of other currencies.

Gold is considered a hedge against inflation, likely to result from widespread stimulus, while higher bond yields challenge that status.

On the technical front, the psychological $1,700 level is very significant, while the $1,760-$1,765 range is an important hurdle for gold to rise further, Innes said.

Meanwhile, holdings in the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Trust , fell 0.6% on Friday to the lowest since May 2020.

Speculators cut their bullish positions in COMEX gold and silver contracts in the week to Feb. 23, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday.

Silver rose 1.3% to $26.96 an ounce, while palladium

climbed 1.8% to $2,357.94. Platinum gained 3% to $1,223.87.

(Reporting by Shreyansi Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and Uttaresh.V)

((Shreyansi.Singh@thomsonreuters.com; +91 8061823666/3590 (If within U.S. call +1 646 223 8780); Reuters Messaging: Shreyansi.Singh@thomsonreuters.com))