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Gold dips as renewed risk appetite lifts Asian stocks

[BENGALURU] Gold prices edged lower on Wednesday as Asian equities won support on the first day of the new year from gains in US stock futures, pointing to an improvement in risk appetite.

Spot gold fell 0.2 per cent to US$1,279.31 per ounce at 0120 GMT. The metal was not far off Monday's more than six-month high of US$1,284.09.

US gold futures were little changed at US$1,281 per ounce.

The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of major currencies, was marginally lower.

Market voices on:

US President Donald Trump invited Republican and Democratic congressional leaders to a border security briefing at the White House as the federal government remained partially shut down over his demand to fund a wall along the US-Mexico border.

Asian shares crept cautiously higher on the first trading day of the new year as early gains in US stock futures spoke of some improvement in risk appetite.

History shows that cooperation is the best choice for both China and the United States, Chinese President Xi Jinping told Mr Trump in a congratulatory message on Tuesday to mark 40 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said he is ready to meet Mr Trump again anytime to achieve their common goal of denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula, but warned he may have to take an alternative path if US sanctions and pressure against the country continued.

British Prime Minister Theresa May urged lawmakers to back her Brexit deal, promising that it would allow the country to "turn a corner" and let the government focus on solving domestic problems such as housing and a skill shortage.

US Mint sales of American Eagle gold and silver coins dropped to their lowest in 11 years during 2018, US Mint data showed on Monday, as investors favoured higher-yielding assets, despite global stock and bond market volatility late in the year.