PRECIOUS-Gold flat as investors wait for BOJ decision

Mon Jan 21, 2013 7:45pm EST

SINGAPORE, Jan 22 (Reuters) - Gold prices were flat on
Tuesday as investors waited to see whether the Bank of Japan
would shift to more aggressive monetary stimulus at the end of a
policy meeting as widely expected, while a tax hike on Indian
gold imports had little impact.    
    
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold traded unchanged at $1,689.50 an ounce by
0023 GMT.
    * U.S. gold inched up 0.2 percent to $1,689.60.
    * India has raised the import tax on gold by 2 percentage
points to 6 percent to curb purchases and rein in a ballooning
fiscal deficit, but industry officials expect only a moderate
drop in demand. 
    * The BOJ is set on Tuesday to unveil its most determined
effort yet to beat years of economic stagnation, but the big
challenge will be how to impress markets already pricing in a
doubling of its inflation target and further asset buying.
 
    * Republican leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives
have scheduled a vote on Wednesday on a nearly four-month
extension of U.S. borrowing capacity, but the bill does not
specify a dollar amount. 
    * Commodity fund managers who performed well over the
testing final quarter of 2012 believe metal commodity prices
could do better than expected in early 2013 due to a combination
of Chinese restocking and continued supply disruption.
 
    * In industry news, Gold Fields, the world's
fourth-largest bullion producer, will report lower output
figures for the October-December quarter, primarily due to
illegal strikes at its South African operations, the company
said on Monday. 
    * Spot platinum edged up 0.1 percent to $1,675.74, in
a discount to gold for a third straight session after briefly
regaining premium last week.
    * For the top stories on metals and other news, click
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    MARKET NEWS
    * European shares inched towards two-year highs on Monday,
as the attempt to break the budget impasse in the United States
and the expectations of aggressive Japanese stimulus bolstered
the appetite for shares. 
    * The yen's recent violent selloff came to an abrupt halt
Tuesday as investors waited for the BOJ decision. 
        
    DATA/EVENTS
 0300 Japan    BOJ rate decision                                
 1000 Germany  ZEW economic sentiment       Jan                 
 1330 U.S.     Chicago Fed National Activity Index              
 1500 U.S.     Existing home sales          Dec                 
 1500 U.S.     Richmond Fed composite index Jan                 
    
    PRICES
    
   Precious metals prices 0023 GMT
  Metal             Last    Change  Pct chg  YTD pct chg    Volume
  Spot Gold        1689.50   -0.05   -0.00      0.89
  Spot Silver        31.99    0.00   +0.00      5.65
  Spot Platinum    1675.74    2.25   +0.13      9.17
  Spot Palladium    713.97   -1.03   -0.14      3.17
  COMEX GOLD FEB3  1689.60    2.60   +0.15      0.82        39963
  COMEX SILVER MAR3  32.01    0.08   +0.24      5.89        11350
  Euro/Dollar       1.3304
  Dollar/Yen         89.57
  COMEX gold and silver contracts show the most active months
   

 (Reporting by Rujun Shen; Editing by Joseph Radford)
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