March 24, 2020 / 1:54 AM / 14 days ago

PRECIOUS-Gold rises over 1% as U.S. Fed ramps up support measures

    March 24 (Reuters) - Gold prices rose on Tuesday, following
a near 4% jump in the previous session after the U.S. Federal
Reserve announced unprecedented measures to support an economy
which is reeling from the coronavirus pandemic.
    * Spot gold        climbed 1.7% to $1,578.83 per ounce by
0116 GMT. The metal rose 3.7% on Monday, its highest percentage
gain since June 2016. 
    * U.S. gold futures        rose 1.6% to $1,592.20 per ounce.
    * For the first time, the Fed will back purchases of
corporate bonds, backstop direct loans to companies and will
"soon" roll out a program to get credit to small and
medium-sized business.             
    * Asian shares were set to rally as the U.S. central bank
pledged to help the economy from a fallout. MSCI's broadest
index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan                 added
0.5% in early trade.            
    * President Donald Trump said on Monday he is considering
how to reopen the U.S. economy when a 15-day shutdown ends next
week, even as the coronavirus spreads rapidly.             
    * A far-reaching virus economic stimulus package remained
stalled in the U.S. Senate on Monday as Democrats said it
contained too little money for states and hospitals and not
enough restrictions on a fund to help big businesses.
    * Global central banks also took various measures to
mitigate the damage of the outbreak, with Australia's central
bank proposing to buy $2.35 billion in government bonds, while
Germany agreed for a package worth up to $808 billion.
    * Three of the world's largest gold refineries said on
Monday they had suspended production in Switzerland for at least
a week after local authorities ordered the closure of
non-essential industry to curtail the spread of the virus.
    * Holdings of the world's largest gold-backed
exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Trust      , rose 1.8% to 923.99
tonnes on Monday.          
    * Palladium        surged 7.3% to $1,844.50 per ounce, while
platinum        rose 4.5% to $671.11 and silver        jumped
5.4% to $13.97 per ounce.
0815  France   Markit Serv, Comp, Mfg Flash PMIs   March
0830  Germany  Markit Serv, Comp, Mfg Flash PMIs   March
0900  EU       Markit Serv, Comp, Mfg Flash PMIs   March
0930  UK       Flash  Serv, Comp, Mfg PMIs         March
1345  US       Flash Markit Serv, Comp, Mfg PMIs   March
1400  US       New Home Sales-Units                Feb

 (Reporting by Asha Sistla in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika
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