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Gold Prices Gain on Weaker Bond Yields, Fed Minutes Loom

* Fed minutes due at 1800 GMT

* U.S. 10-year Treasury yields at four-month low 

July 7 (Reuters) - Gold prices rose on Wednesday towards a three-week high scaled in the previous session, helped by a fall in U.S. Treasury yields, while investors awaited minutes from the Federal Reserve’s June meeting for more clues on the policy outlook.

Spot gold was up 0.4% at $1,803.06 per ounce, as of 0654 GMT, after hitting its highest since June 17 at $1,814.78 on Tuesday.

U.S. gold futures rose 0.5% to $1,803.80 per ounce.

“A fall in treasury yields is certainly providing some support to gold, whilst we are also seeing some slight weakness in the U.S. dollar during early morning trading, which will also help,” said ING analyst Warren Patterson.

Benchmark 10-year Treasury yields were pinned near their lowest in more than four months. Lower bond yields reduce the opportunity cost of holding non-interest bearing gold.

The dollar index was slightly lower at 92.508 following a 0.4% gain in the previous session.

Market participants are now awaiting minutes from the Fed’s latest meeting, due at 1800 GMT, which could shed more light on the interest rate trajectory after a hawkish tilt by the U.S. central bank last month.

“I suspect that these (minutes) will just confirm the Fed is becoming relatively more hawkish, so (we) could see gold trading lower as a result,” ING’s Patterson said.

Gold is highly sensitive to rising U.S. interest rates, which increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.

“Rising uncertainty around monetary policies, inflation and increasing risk of equity market volatility should favour safe-haven gold demand,” ANZ analysts said in a note.

“Central banks have increased gold purchases in recent months, offsetting some of the physical demand losses in Q2 2021.”

Asian share markets stumbled as a bout of risk aversion boosted safe-haven assets.

Elsewhere, silver rose 0.9% at $26.38 per ounce, palladium gained 0.2% to $2,799.67, and platinum was steady at $1,091.67.

(Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and Edmund Blair)

Source: Reuters

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