July 23, 2018 / 1:14 AM / a year ago

PRECIOUS-Gold rises further as U.S. dollar eases

    BENGALURU, July 23 (Reuters) - Gold prices rose further on
Monday as the dollar eased to its lowest in nearly two weeks
after U.S. President Donald Trump criticised the Federal
Reserve's interest rate tightening policy.
    * Spot gold        was up 0.2 percent at $1,234.24 an ounce
at 0045 GMT, after rising 0.7 percent in the previous session.
    * U.S. gold futures         for August delivery were 0.3
percent higher at $1,234.20 an ounce.    
    * The dollar index       , which measures the greenback
against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.2 percent
at 94.252. It fell to its weakest since July 11 earlier in the
    * Trump on Friday dug in on his criticism of the Federal
Reserve's policy on raising interest rates, saying it takes away
from the United States' "big competitive edge."             
    * Trump on Friday said he was ready to impose tariffs on all
$500 billion of imported goods from China, threatening to
escalate a clash over trade policy that has unnerved financial
    * A policy debate in China on how best to address slowing
growth deepened on Friday, as analysts urged authorities to
boost fiscal stimulus amid rising risks to the world's
second-biggest economy from a bitter trade conflict with the
United States.             
    * Global finance leaders called on Sunday for stepped-up
dialogue to prevent trade and geopolitical tensions from hurting
growth, but ended a two-day G20 meeting with little consensus on
how to resolve multiple disputes over U.S. tariff actions.
    * The Bank of Japan, facing stubbornly low inflation, is in
unusually active discussions before this month's policy
decision, with changes to its interest-rate targets and
stock-buying techniques on the table, people familiar with the
central bank's thinking told Reuters.             
    * Japanese government bond prices fell sharply on Monday,
with the benchmark 10-year yield hitting its highest level in
nearly six months, following reports that the Bank of Japan is
actively discussing changes to its policies.             
    * Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Sunday cautioned Trump
about pursuing hostile policies against Tehran, saying "war with
Iran is the mother of all wars", but did not rule out peace
between the two countries.             
    * A drop in prices spurred some interest for physical gold
in major Asian hubs last week, but failed to stoke significant
demand in India as buyers awaited bigger dips.         
    * Hedge funds and money managers switched to a net short
position in COMEX gold contracts for the first time since 2016
in the week to July 17, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading
Commission (CFTC) data showed on Friday.        

 (Reporting by Karen Rodrigues in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
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