* Gold at $2,000/oz still achievable, economist says * Interactive graphic tracking global spread of coronavirus: tmsnrt.rs/3mvcUoa (Adds comments, updates prices) By K. Sathya Narayanan Jan 20 (Reuters) - Gold rose more than 1% on Wednesday on expectations that U.S. President Joe Biden's administration would increase stimulus measures to deal with the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic. Spot gold was up 1.6% to $1,868.00 per ounce by 1:56 p.m. EST (1856 GMT), having touched more than a one-week high earlier. U.S. gold futures settled up 1.4% at $1,866.50. "Whether the feelings of comity will last the afternoon remain in question as Biden's first acts will be to reverse some of his predecessor's policies. Gold has had a very good day and a close here or even near $1,860 opens the door for $1,900," said Tai Wong, head of base and precious metals derivatives trading at BMO. "The most market-relevant indicator for gold markets will be the reception that the 1.9 trillion USD stimulus bill will get on Capitol Hill, especially in the Senate and whether it will encounter a fair tailwind or stormy seas." Biden was sworn into office on Wednesday, with investors focused on his $1.9 trillion stimulus package proposal and the pace of COVID-19 vaccine distribution. Gold is considered a hedge against inflation that can result from stimulus measures. Comments by Janet Yellen, Biden's nominee to head the Treasury Department, underscoring the need for stimulus also supported the metal, said Bob Haberkorn, senior market strategist at RJO Future. Yellen, a former chair of the Federal Reserve, on Tuesday urged U.S. lawmakers to "act big" on relief spending and said pandemic relief would take priority over tax increases. Gold can still reach $2,000, probably by the middle of the second quarter when a good amount of people get inoculated and there's so much cash in the system with demand almost coming back to normal, said Howie Lee, an economist at OCBC Bank. "People will start looking at inflation very closely then," Lee added. Silver rose 2.2% to $25.75 an ounce, platinum climbed 2.3% to $1,108.05, while palladium rose 1.1% to $2,378.37. (Reporting by K. Sathya Narayanan and Arpan Vanghese in Bengaluru Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise and Paul Simao)
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