March 12, 2019 / 11:33 AM / 5 months ago

PRECIOUS-Gold gains as dollar wilts on mixed CPI data; Brexit vote eyed

(Updates prices, adds details and comment)

* UK vote on May’s Brexit deal around 1900 GMT

* Silver touches highest since March 1

By Sumita Layek

March 12 (Reuters) - Gold rose on Tuesday, supported by a dip in the dollar after U.S. consumer prices registered their smallest annual gain in nearly 2-1/2 years.

A pullback in equities also provided further support to bullion going into a key Brexit vote by British lawmakers.

Spot gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,297.15 per ounce as of 1400 GMT, while U.S. gold futures were up 0.5 percent at $1,297.70.

The dollar fell, making bullion cheaper for holders of other currencies.

While the U.S. Consumer Price Index rose for the first time in four months in February, it was the smallest annual gain in nearly 2-1/2 years

“Gold is moving up due to the weakness of the dollar, the stock markets going down, the CPI data, and the Brexit story,” said ActivTrades chief analyst Carlo Alberto De Casa.

“If the dollar weakens further, we shall see gold above $1,300 and trying to reach resistance at $1,320. Gold is still in a consolidation phase.”

An earlier rally across global equities on last-minute tweaks to Britain’s deal to exit the European Union evaporated as comments from the government’s top lawyer raised fresh doubts the new terms won’t sway lawmakers, quashing hopes the government would secure a deal before the March 29 deadline.

British lawmakers were preparing to vote on a divorce deal around 1900 GMT.

“If the deal is approved it could generate some moderate negative reaction on gold prices because investors are going to buy stocks rather than gold. In case it is rejected, it could be slightly positive for gold, because the market has already priced in the deal not going through,” De Casa said.

Gold has also recently found some support from increasing concerns about global growth, briefly rising above $1,300 on Friday. Weak U.S. jobs data and modest retail sales in January were seen as signs of a U.S. economy losing momentum.

Gold could rise to $1,400 by the end of 2019, with global growth concerns a factor underpinning the advance, Capital Economics analyst Ross Strachan said.

“We expect equity markets to move significantly lower and gold’s safe-haven properties to come into play.”

Reflecting investor sentiment, holdings in the SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, rose 0.4 percent to 769.53 tonnes on Monday.

Among other precious metals, palladium was up 0.8 percent at $1,548.20 per ounce, while platinum gained 1.4 percent to $836.22.

Silver advanced 0.7 percent to $15.42 per ounce, having earlier touched its highest since March 1. (Reporting by Sumita Layek in Bengaluru; Editing by Dale Hudson and Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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