PRECIOUS-Gold hovers near eight-week high on easing U.S. dollar, yields

    April 22 (Reuters) - Gold prices rose on Thursday to hover
near an eight-week high touched in the last session, as a
sagging dollar and weaker U.S. Treasury yields boosted the
metal's appeal, while palladium held close to an all-time high
hit in the previous session.
    * Spot gold        was up 0.1% at $1,794.67 per ounce by
0115 GMT, after hitting its highest since Feb. 25 at $1,797.41
on Wednesday.
    * U.S. gold futures        rose 0.1% to $1,795.40 per ounce.
    * Palladium        gained 0.1% to $2,877.26 an ounce, 
having surged to an all-time high of $2,891.20 per ounce on
Wednesday, boosted by supply concerns for the auto-catalyst
    * Benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yield             was
pinned below 1.6%, reducing the opportunity cost of holding
non-yielding bullion.      
    * The dollar index        fell 0.1% against its rivals,
making gold less expensive for other currency holders.       
    * A bipartisan U.S. congressional push to counteract China
picked up steam on Wednesday as a Senate committee
overwhelmingly backed a bill pressing Beijing on human rights
and economic competition and other lawmakers introduced a
measure seeking billions for technology research.             
    * The U.S. economy will grow at its fastest annual pace in
decades this year and outperform most of its major peers, but
another COVID-19 surge was the biggest risk over the next three
months, a Reuters poll showed.             
    * Market participants await a European Central Bank meeting
due later today and a U.S. Federal Reserve policy meeting next
    * More than 143.22 million people have been reported to be
infected by the novel coronavirus globally and 3,187,963​ have
died, according to a Reuters tally.             
    * Among other precious metals, silver        eased 0.1% to
$26.55 per ounce and platinum        slipped 0.2% to $1,211.96.
0645  France  Business Climate Mfg            April
1145  EU      ECB Refinancing, Deposit Rates  April
1230  US      Initial Jobless Clm             Weekly
1400  US      Existing Home Sales             March
Governing Council of the ECB holds monetary policy 
meeting in Frankfurt

 (Reporting by Shreyansi Singh in Bengaluru; editing by