Dec 15 (Reuters) - Gold prices were steady in Asian trade on Friday, poised for their first weekly gain in four, as the dollar sagged on concerns about the progress of U.S. tax reform. FUNDAMENTALS * Spot gold was nearly unchanged at $1,253.20 an ounce, as of 0054 GMT, after dipping 0.2 percent in the previous session. Bullion was on track for its first weekly gain in four weeks. * U.S. gold futures edged down 0.1 percent at $1,255.70. * The dollar was on the defensive on Friday after wrangling over a bill to change the U.S. tax code dented confidence, while the euro sagged after the European Central Bank signalled it would maintain stimulus for as long as needed. * Asian shares edged higher on Friday, on track for weekly gains, though sentiment was kept in check by Wall Street's weakness. * U.S. President Donald Trump's drive to win passage of a sweeping Republican tax bill in the U.S. Congress hit potential obstacles on Thursday as two more Republican senators insisted on changes, joining a list of lawmakers whose support is uncertain. * The European Central Bank on Thursday stuck to its pledge to keep money pouring into the euro zone economy for as long as needed, despite opposition from some rate setters and increased growth and inflation forecasts for the area. * U.S. retail sales increased more than expected in November as the holiday shopping season got off to a brisk start, pointing to sustained strength in the economy that could pave the way for further Federal Reserve interest rate hikes next year. * Businesses across the euro zone are ending 2017 on a near seven-year high, with demand and price pressures picking up and forward-looking indicators pointing to a busy start to 2018. * Last week's breakthrough in Brexit talks has reduced the risk of a disorderly British departure from the European Union and may boost economic confidence, the Bank of England said on Thursday after it left interest rates unchanged. * Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday the United States was in the grip of a fabricated spymania whipped up by President Donald Trump's opponents but he thought battered U.S.-Russia relations would recover one day. DATA/EVENT AHEAD (GMT) 1000 Euro zone Eurostat trade Oct 1330 U.S. New York Fed manufacturing Dec 1415 U.S. Industrial production Nov (Reporting by Apeksha Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
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