December 14, 2012 / 1:02 AM / in 5 years

PRECIOUS-Gold heads for 3rd straight weekly drop; US fiscal talks eyed

SINGAPORE, Dec 14 (Reuters) - Gold edged lower on Friday,
with prices heading for their third consecutive weekly decline
as investors cautiously watch U.S. talks to avoid a looming
fiscal calamity that has so far made little progress.
    
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold inched down 0.1 percent to $1,694.35 an
ounce by 0036 GMT, on course for a 0.5-percent weekly decline.
    * U.S. gold was little changed at $1,695.60.
    * U.S. President Barack Obama and House of Representatives 
Speaker John Boehner met for about an hour on Thursday as
frustration mounted over the lack of progress in budget talks.
 
    * Worries about the stalemate in talks to avert the $600
billion in tax hikes and spending cuts in early 2013, which
could tip the world's largest economy back into recession,
overshadowed data showing sharp falls in jobless claims and a
rebound in retail sales. 
    * The euro zone agreed on Thursday to provide nearly 50
billion euros ($64 billion) in long-delayed aid to Athens,
prompting its Prime Minister Antonis Samaras to declare an end
to talk of a Greek exit from the single currency.
 
    * Spot palladium inched down 0.3 percent to $687.30,
headed for a 1.2-percent fall from a week earlier, snapping a
six-week winning streak.
    * For the top stories on metals and other news, click
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    MARKET NEWS
    * The S&P 500 ended its six-day winning streak on Thursday,
retreating as worries intensified over Washington's "fiscal
cliff" negotiations. 
    * The yen remained in the doldrums on Friday as investors
continued to give it a wide berth on expectations the Bank of
Japan would print more money next week to stimulate the world's
third biggest economy. 
    
    
    DATA/EVENTS
 0145 China      HSBC flash manufacturing PMI   Dec         
 0430 Japan      Revised industrial output      Oct          
 0758 France     Markit flash manufacturing PMI Dec
 0828 Germany    Markit flash manufacturing PMI Dec
 0858 Euro zone  Markit flash manufacturing PMI Dec 
 0900 Euro zone  ECB Financial Stability Review 
 1330 U.S.       CPI                            Nov          
 1415 U.S.       Industrial output Nov
        
    PRICES  
 Precious metals prices 0036 GMT
  Metal             Last    Change  Pct chg  YTD pct chg    Volume
  Spot Gold        1694.35   -2.34   -0.14      8.35
  Spot Silver        32.48   -0.03   -0.09     17.30
  Spot Platinum    1606.50   -4.99   -0.31     15.33
  Spot Palladium    687.30   -1.70   -0.25      5.33
  COMEX GOLD FEB3  1695.60   -1.20   -0.07      8.22         1703
  COMEX SILVER MAR3  32.56    0.20   +0.62     16.62          396
  Euro/Dollar       1.3068
  Dollar/Yen         83.63
  COMEX gold and silver contracts show the most active months
 
 (Reporting by Rujun Shen; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

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