May 2, 2019 / 1:35 AM / 24 days ago

PRECIOUS-Gold steady near one-week low as Fed clouds rate cut bets

May 2 (Reuters) - Gold steadied on Thursday, holding just above a one-week low touched in the previous session after comments from U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell dashed hopes of a near-term rate cut, boosting the dollar.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Spot gold was unchanged at $1,276.35 per ounce as of 0102 GMT, having fallen to $1,272.74, its lowest since April 24, on Wednesday.

* U.S. gold futures fell 0.5 percent to $1,278.30 an ounce.

* The dollar took a breather in Asia on Thursday after markets were whipsawed by mixed messages on policy from the Federal Reserve.

* On Wednesday the dollar rose after the Fed held interest rates steady and signalled little appetite to adjust them any time soon, taking heart in continued job gains and economic growth and the likelihood that weak inflation will edge higher.

* However, global equities snapped a three-day winning streak on Wednesday, given the Fed’s ambiguity surrounding future interest rates.

* The gold industry is likely to see an increase in buyout deals in the near future as miners fight to attract a shrinking pool of investment capital, the chief executive of Canada’s Iamgold Corp said on Wednesday.

* The United States and China are nearing a trade deal that would roll back a portion of the $250 billion in U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods, Politico reported on Wednesday after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the two countries completed “productive” talks in Beijing.

* Venezuelans heeded opposition leader Juan Guaido’s call to take to the streets on Wednesday in a bid to force President Nicolas Maduro from power, but there was little concrete sign of change in a crisis that increasingly looks like a political stalemate.

DATA AHEAD (GMT)

* 0750 France Markit Mfg PMI April

* 0755 Germany Markit/BME Mfg PMI April

* 0800 EU Markit Mfg Final PMI April

* 1100 UK BOE Bank Rate May

* 1100 UK GB BOE QE Corp May

* 1230 U.S. Initial Jobless Claims Weekly

* 1400 U.S. Factory Orders MM March (Reporting by Arijit Bose in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin)

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