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Gold flat as weak dollar counters rally in stocks

·2 min read
Gold bars are pictured on display at Korea Gold Exchange in Seoul

By Shreyansi Singh

(Reuters) - Gold prices were little changed on Monday as a softer dollar countered pressure from gains on Wall Street driven by hopes for a swift economic recovery following strong U.S. jobs data.

Spot gold held steady at $1,729.20 per ounce, as of 12:14 p.m. EDT (1614 GMT). U.S. gold futures were little changed at $1,730.30.

The S&P 500 and the Dow hit record highs on data that showed the U.S. economy created the most jobs in seven months in March. [.N]

"As long as we've got this upbeat investor and trader risk appetite scenario, the gold and silver markets are probably going to languish at best and maybe continue to trend sideways to lower," said Kitco Metals senior analyst Jim Wyckoff.

The dollar weakened, making bullion less expensive for holders of other currencies.

"Stimulus is inflationary and potentially bullish for gold in the longer term, and also silver, but on the shorter term traders are focusing on the positive economic aspects of the stimulus package," Wyckoff added.

U.S. President Joe Biden's announcement of a long-awaited $2 trillion-plus job plan last week has fueled concerns over inflation.

On investors' radar were minutes from the Federal Reserve's last policy meeting on Wednesday.

"So far, the Fed is quite committed to keep interest rates unchanged until the end of 2023, but if inflation increases ... then they will achieve their long term objective sooner than expected," said Jigar Trivedi, commodities analyst at Mumbai-based broker Anand Rathi Shares.

"If that happens, we are going to see an increase in interest rates and that will be negative for gold prices."

Silver fell 0.7% to $24.80 per ounce and palladium was little changed at $2,665.06.

Platinum fell 0.3% to $1,206.46 per ounce after hitting its highest level since March 18 earlier in the session at $1,218.

(Reporting by Shreyansi Singh and Sumita Layek in Bengaluru; Editing by Matthew Lewis and Barbara Lewis)