Jan 27 (Reuters) - Gold prices held steady on Wednesday ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's monetary policy decision due later in the day and as investors awaited a stimulus package in the world's largest economy. FUNDAMENTALS * Spot gold was little changed at $1,849.76 per ounce by 0031 GMT. U.S. gold futures eased 0.1% to $1,848.60. * The Fed will announce the verdict of its two-day policy meeting on Wednesday and it is expected to stand pat on policy. * Democrats in the U.S. Senate will move forward on U.S. President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan without Republican support if necessary, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said on Tuesday. * The Biden administration will purchase 200 million more coronavirus vaccines and funnel more to states now, a senior administration official said on Tuesday. * The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday raised its forecast for global economic growth in 2021 and said the coronavirus-triggered downturn last year would be nearly a full percentage point less severe than expected. * U.S. consumer confidence rose moderately in January while lingering concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic led to a further deterioration in households' perceptions of the labor market. * China's net gold imports via Hong Kong in December rose for a second straight month, although imports for the year plunged 85% as the coronavirus dealt a blow to consumption of the metal. * Holdings of the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Trust , fell 0.1% to 1,172.38 tonnes on Tuesday. * Silver was flat at $25.43 an ounce, platinum rose 0.1% to $1,099.68, and palladium gained 0.1% at $2,326.30. DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 1330 US Durable Goods Dec 1900 U.S. Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee announces its decision on interest rates followed by statement 1930 U.S. Federal Reserve chairperson holds a news conference (Reporting by Sumita Layek in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)
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