PRECIOUS-Gold edges down on caution ahead of key central bank meetings

    * Trump to announce new Fed chair this week
    * Policy meetings of FOMC, BoE, and BOJ due this week
    * Spot gold may bounce to a resistance at $1,278- technicals

 (Updates prices)
    By Vijaykumar Vedala
    Oct 30 (Reuters) - Gold inched lower on Monday as investors
remained cautious ahead of policy meetings of three major
central banks, while keeping an eye on the appointment of the
next U.S. Federal Reserve chair. 
    The market is awaiting cues from the meetings of the Federal
Open Market Committee (FOMC) and central banks of England and
Japan this week.              
    U.S President Donald Trump is also expected to announce the
next head of the Federal Reserve, amid speculations that
governor Jerome Powell could be the favoured candidate.    
    Spot gold        dipped 0.3 percent, to $1,269.23 per ounce
at 0724 GMT. U.S. gold futures         for December delivery
were down 0.1 percent, to $1,270.10. 
    "The week is very data heavy, with many tier 1 central bank
decisions, PMI's and other data culminating in Friday's non-farm
payrolls," said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst with
    "With dovish ECB and Bank of Canada followed by impressive
U.S. GDP data last week, we would expect the dollar to remain on
the front foot and gold to struggle," he added.
    Higher interest rates tend to boost the dollar and push bond
yields up, putting pressure on gold prices by increasing the
opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.
    Meanwhile, Trump is leaning towards nominating Powell from a
short list of five candidates to be the next Fed chair, two
sources familiar with the matter said on Friday.             
    "Powell is said to be the front-runner right now and is
being viewed by the markets as coming from the dovish/(Janet)
Yellen camp, so certainly his appointment could cool the rate
and dollar rally heading into November," INTL FCStone analyst
Edward Meir said in a note. 
    The dollar index        softened against a basket of
currencies, while Asian shares climbed, with MSCI's broadest
index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan                
gaining 0.4 percent.                  
    Spot gold may bounce moderately to a resistance at $1,278
per ounce before falling again, according to Reuters technical
analyst Wang Tao.             
    Hedge funds and money managers cut their net long positions
in COMEX gold contracts for the sixth straight week, in the week
to Oct. 24, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)
data showed on Friday.               
    Among other precious metals, silver        slipped 0.7
percent to $16.72 an ounce.
    Platinum        dipped 0.2 percent to $912.70 an ounce,
while palladium        rose 0.4 percent to $969.22 an ounce.

 (Reporting by Vijaykumar Vedala in Bengaluru; Editing by Sonali
Paul and Vyas Mohan)