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PRECIOUS-Gold spirals lower on vaccine-led economic recovery bets

 (Updates prices)
    * Gold set for a 5.7% monthly drop
    * Silver set to fall about 6.6% for the month
    * Interactive graphic tracking global spread of coronavirus:
open
    * tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7 in an external browser

    By Diptendu Lahiri
    Nov 30 (Reuters) - Gold prices extended their slide to five
month lows on Monday as prospects of a vaccine-led boost to the
economy cast a shadow over safe-haven assets and set bullion on
course for its worst month in four years.
    Spot gold        dipped 1% to $1,770.56 per ounce by 1337
GMT, and was down 5.7% so far this month. The metal also hit its
lowest level since July 2 at $1,764.29 earlier in the session.  
 
    U.S. gold futures        dropped 0.9% to $1,771.20 per
ounce.
    "The news of vaccines has led to a lot of optimism in the
market and we are seeing some outflows in safe-haven assets like
the dollar, Treasuries and the same is being reflected in gold
prices," said OANDA analyst Craig Erlam.
    Gold prices fell despite the dollar hitting its lowest level
in two and a half years.                                 
    Bullion has declined more than $300 an ounce from a record
high of $2,072.50 an ounce hit in August.
    "The short-term trend for bullion has been compromised by
the price falling through the support level at $1,850,"
ActivTrades' chief analyst Carlo Alberto De Casa said in a note.
    "Investors have moved to other assets, seeking faster gains,
although they haven't forgotten that central banks will be
forced to print money for many years to help the economy to
recover from the Covid-19 crisis."
    Optimism around vaccine-induced economic recovery has put
world shares on track for their best month on record.
           
    Data showed China's factory activity expanded at the fastest
pace in more than three years in November, also aiding risk
sentiment.             
    Investors are now looking to congressional testimony by U.S.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell this week.
    Silver        fell 2.6% to $22.10 an ounce, recovering some
ground after dropping as much as 3.6% earlier in the session.
The metal was on track for a monthly decline of about 6.6%.
    Platinum        rose 1.2% to $975, while palladium       
slipped 1.2% to $2,397 per ounce. 

 (Reporting by Diptendu Lahiri in Bengaluru; editing by Carmel
Crimmins, Kirsten Donovan 
)
  
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