PRECIOUS-Gold hemmed in narrow range as investors eye U.S. jobs data

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* Palladium heads for weekly gains after falling to four

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* US benchmark yields peak since June

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* US non-farm payroll data due 1230 GMT (recap, adds comment, updates prices)

October 8 (Businesshala) – Gold prices rose on Friday but remained trapped in a narrow range, as investors sought more direction from a US non-farm payrolls report, seen as crucial to the US Federal Reserve’s stimulus taper schedule Is.

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Spot gold rose 0.2% to $1,759.34 an ounce as of 0320 GMT, trading in a range of $1,760.43-$1,752.27.

US gold futures were flat at $1,760.10.

Jeffrey Haley, senior market analyst for Asia-Pacific at OANDA, said gold was finding support in Asia as local investors bought the precious metal for non-farm payrolls and weekend event risk. Print Agriculture Payroll tonight.”

“If we see numbers above 500,000, gold could resume its downtrend as markets lock and load December for the start of the Fed taper, which will boost US yields and the dollar.”

The dollar index held steady below recent highs. A stronger dollar makes gold more expensive for holders of other currencies.

Meanwhile, the US 10-year Treasury yield rose to its highest level since June.

US non-farm wages are expected to increase by 500,000 jobs in September, according to a Businesshala survey. The data comes on the heels of a weekly report showing last week the highest number of jobless benefits claims in three months.

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell indicated last month that there was broad agreement among policymakers to begin reducing the central bank’s monthly asset purchases as early as November, as long as the September jobs report was “decent”.

Lower incentives and higher interest rates raise bond yields, which translates into an increased opportunity cost of holding no-interest bullion.

Elsewhere, spot silver fell 0.4% to $22.48 an ounce.

Platinum rose 0.5% to $983.87 and was up 1.2% for the week.

Palladium fell 0.2% to $1,956.17, but was headed for a weekly gain after four losses. (Reporting by Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)


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