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Gold flat, US dollar up on higher US yields

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Gold prices were flat early Thursday while the US dollar stayed firm helped by higher long-term US Treasury yields, though lingering US-China trade tensions kept the greenback's gains in check.

[BENGALURU] Gold prices were flat early Thursday while the US dollar stayed firm helped by higher long-term US Treasury yields, though lingering US-China trade tensions kept the greenback's gains in check.

Spot gold was flat at US$1,348.80 per ounce at 0058 GMT, while US gold futures fell 0.1 per cent to US$1,352 per ounce.

The US dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of currencies, was up about 0.1 per cent at 89.673.

"Robust" business borrowing, rising consumer spending, and tight labour markets indicate the US economy remains on track for continued growth, the Federal Reserve reported on Wednesday, with the risks of a global trade war the one big outlier.

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US President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he hoped an unprecedented summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un would be successful after a recent visit to Pyongyang by CIA Director Mike Pompeo, but warned he would call it off if he did not think it would produce results.

Mr Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday they had agreed to intensify trade consultations between the two longtime allies, with an aim to expand investment and trade between both countries.

British inflation unexpectedly cooled to a one-year low in March, calling into question whether the Bank of England will raise interest rates more than once before the end of the year.

Russian gold and silver producer Polymetal said on Wednesday its first-quarter revenue rose 19 per cent year-on-year to US$354 million due to an increase in production and higher sales of gold.

Demand for physical gold was lower-than-usual during a key festival in the world's second biggest consumer India as local prices peaked and a cash crunch curbed retail spending.

Sri Lanka imposed a 15 per cent tax on imported gold with effect from Wednesday to prevent illegal smuggling of the metal from the island nation, a finance ministry official said.

REUTERS