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PRECIOUS-Gold gains 1% as Trump signs stimulus bill

    Dec 28 (Reuters) - Gold prices jumped 1% on Monday as the
metal's appeal as an inflation hedge was boosted by news that
U.S. President Donald Trump had signed a long-awaited
coronavirus relief aid bill.

    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold        rose 1% to $1,895.03 per ounce by 0145
GMT. U.S. gold futures        gained 0.8% to $1,899.10.
    * Trump on Sunday signed into law a $2.3 trillion pandemic
aid and spending package, restoring unemployment benefits to
millions of Americans and averting a partial federal government
shutdown, officials said.                          
    * Gold has gained more than 24% this year, largely driven by
its appeal as a hedge against inflation and currency debasement
in the wake of unprecedented stimulus measures unveiled globally
to mitigate the impact of the pandemic.
    * Further supporting the metal on Monday, the dollar       
edged lower against a basket of currencies, bolstering gold's
appeal to other currency holders.       
    * Bank of Japan policymakers were divided on how far to go
in tweaking the stimulus programme, with some calling for an
overhaul of its strategy for achieving 2% inflation, a summary
of views voiced at the December rate review showed.             
    * Europe launched a mass COVID-19 vaccination drive on
Sunday with pensioners and medics lining up to get the first
shots to see off a pandemic that has crippled economies and
claimed more than 1.7 million lives worldwide.             
   * Britain on Monday urged businesses to prepare for Brexit,
after the country clinched a trade deal with the European Union
on Thursday that preserved zero-tariff and zero-quota access to
the bloc's single market.             
   * Silver        rose 3% to $26.63 an ounce. Platinum       
climbed 1.7% to $1,040.37 and palladium        was up 0.5% at
$2,360.79. 

 (Reporting by Nakul Iyer in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu
Sahu)
  
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