November 27, 2012 / 4:05 AM / 5 years ago

PRECIOUS-Gold steadies around $1,750/oz after Greek debt deal

4 Min Read

* EU-IMF agrees on cutting long-term Greek debt
    * COMEX gold option expiry eyed
    * Spot gold neutral in $1,745-$1,755/oz - technicals
    * Coming up: U.S. consumer confidence, Nov; 1500 GMT

 (Adds details; updates prices)
    By Rujun Shen
    SINGAPORE, Nov 27 (Reuters) - Gold traded in a tight range
around $1,750 an ounce on Tuesday, as traders moved to the
sidelines after initially pushing up bullion by almost $3
following a deal among Greece's international lenders to cut the
country's long-term debt.
    Euro zone finance ministers and the International Monetary
Fund reached an agreement on reducing Greece's debt in a
breakthrough to release urgently needed loans to keep the
near-bankrupt Greek economy afloat. 
    The euro rose to its highest in nearly a month earlier in
the day, before erasing much of the rise, while the dollar edged
lower against a basket of currencies, supporting sentiment in
dollar-priced commodities. 
    "There is a lot of apathy towards the Europe situation right
now," said a Hong Kong-based trader, adding that many investors
have chosen to sit on the sidelines as the month-end approaches,
and some of them are closing books for the year.
    But expectations for continuous monetary easing from central
banks around the world was boosting sentiment in gold, he said.
    "The big picture is still driving people to precious metals,
because they think the current problem is either not addressed,
or won't be realistically solved other than by the current
tactic, which is to have central banks and finance ministries
working together to stimulate economies," he added.
    Uncertainty around the U.S. fiscal problems also helped
support gold, as lawmakers resumed talks to avoid the "fiscal
cliff" -- a package of $600 billion tax hikes and spending cuts
that would kick off in early 2013 if they did not reach an
    Spot gold traded nearly flat at $1,749.41 an ounce by
0714 GMT, after climbing to $1,751.40 earlier in the session.
U.S. gold was also little changed, at $1,749.80.
    Technical analysis suggested that signals will be neutral so
long as spot gold remains in a range of $1,746-$1,755 an ounce,
said Reuters market analyst Wang Tao. 
    Investors are also eyeing the expiry of COMEX gold December
option later in the day. The strike level at $1,750 has
attracted high open interest.
    At the $1,750 level, open interest on calls was at 8,191
contracts and on puts 7,773 contracts, Reuters data showed.  
    "Over the past few days we have seen a lot of gravitational
pull around that strike," said the Hong Kong-based trader.
    Hedge funds and money managers raised their bullish bets on
U.S. gold futures and options to a four-week high of 148,630
lots in the week ended Nov. 20, said the U.S. Commodity Futures
Trading Commission. 
    Activities in Asia's physical gold market remained slow
after a small bout of scrap selling on Monday, dealers said.
    "The market is comatose," said a Singapore-based dealer,
"People are waiting for higher prices to sell scrap."
    Spot silver rose to $34.26, its highest since Oct.
11, before easing to $34.16.
    Net length in U.S. silver rose the a one-month high of
33,317 contracts, the CFTC said. 

      Precious metals prices 0714 GMT
  Metal             Last    Change  Pct chg  YTD pct chg    Volume
  Spot Gold        1749.41    0.92   +0.05     11.87
  Spot Silver        34.16    0.05   +0.15     23.37
  Spot Platinum    1611.74    3.00   +0.19     15.70
  Spot Palladium    663.72    3.25   +0.49      1.72
  COMEX GOLD DEC2  1749.80    0.20   +0.01     11.68        12880
  COMEX SILVER DEC2  34.17    0.03   +0.10     22.41         7626
  Euro/Dollar       1.2988
  Dollar/Yen         82.25
  COMEX gold and silver contracts show the most active months

 (Editing by Ed Davies)

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