PRECIOUS-Gold off 1-mth low, palladium near 17-mth peak
SINGAPORE, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Gold was little changed on Wednesday after falling to a 1-month low in the previous session, with investors likely to watch currencies for direction, while palladium held near its highest in 17 months as supply concerns sparked speculative buying. FUNDAMENTALS * Spot gold was steady at $1,650.76 an ounce by 0040 GMT. U.S. gold was at $1,651.40 an ounce, up $1.80. * Palladium added $2.22 an ounce to $771.22 after rising to $772 on Tuesday, its highest since September 2011. Sister metal platinum rose $10.50 an ounce to $1,723.99. * PGMs have soared in value since the middle of last year due to concerns about shrinking output blamed on mining disruptions in South Africa and a drop in supply from Russia. Expectations of robust automotive sales have also boosted prices. * Zimbabwe's government told platinum producers on Tuesday to start refining the metal locally within two years, placing a further requirement on an industry already forced to surrender majority shares to locals. * Increased output by Russia could see it surpass the United States as the world's third largest gold miner by 2015, Sergei Kashuba, head of the Russian Gold Industrialists' Union, said on Tuesday. * For the top stories on metals and other news, click , or MARKET NEWS * The euro hardly moved against the dollar, while the yen held firm, having swung higher in dramatic style as investors cut bearish positions after an official from the Group of Seven said there were concerns about excessive movements in Japan's currency. * Japan's Nikkei share average edged lower on Wednesday as a pause in the yen's decline triggered profit-taking on stocks that have gained sharply such as exporters. DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 0700 Germany Wholesale price index 1000 Euro zone Industrial production 1200 U.S. Weekly mortgage market index 1330 U.S. Import prices 1330 U.S. Export prices 1330 U.S. Retail sales 1500 U.S. Business inventories PRICES Precious metals prices 0040 GMT Metal Last Change Pct chg YTD pct chg Volume Spot Gold 1650.76 0.36 +0.02 -1.42 Spot Silver 31.14 0.06 +0.19 2.84 Spot Platinum 1723.99 10.50 +0.61 12.31 Spot Palladium 771.22 2.22 +0.29 11.45 COMEX GOLD APR3 1651.40 1.80 +0.11 -1.46 1540 COMEX SILVER MAR3 31.16 0.14 +0.44 3.06 479 Euro/Dollar 1.3446 Dollar/Yen 93.36 COMEX gold and silver contracts show the most active months (Reporting by Lewa Pardomuan; Editing by Richard Pullin)
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