Nov 24 (Reuters) – Gold prices were flat on Friday, but they were set for a small weekly gain buoyed by the dollar’s overall retreat on a perceived dovish tilt to the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike strategy.
* Spot gold was little changed at USD 1,753.47 per ounce by 0016 GMT. US gold futures rose 0.5% to USD 1,753.30.
* A “substantial majority” of Fed policymakers agreed it would “likely soon be appropriate” to slow the pace of interest rate hikes, the readout of the Nov. 1-2 meeting showed on Wednesday.
* This put the dollar on course for a weekly decline, making gold cheaper for overseas buyers.
* The Fed’s signaling of a slowdown in the pace of rate hikes takes pressure off global peers to keep on raising rates and offers relief to emerging markets, which have suffered their biggest rout in over a decade this year.
* Lower rates tend to lift appeal for bullion in comparison with other interest-bearing assets.
* Lebanon’s central bank has completed an audit of its gold reserves at the request of the International Monetary Fund that found the amount of gold in its vaults was identical to the amounts mentioned in its balance sheets, a bank statement said.
* Ghana’s government is working on a new policy to buy oil products with gold rather than US dollar reserves, Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia said on Facebook on Thursday, in a bid to tackle dwindling foreign currency reserves.
* Spot silver eased 0.3% to USD 21.45, platinum fell 0.1% to USD 986.78, while palladium was little changed at USD 1,881.97.
* Market activity was relatively muted by the US Thanksgiving holiday.
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(Reporting by Arpan Varghese in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich)