PRECIOUS-Gold flat amid doubts about increased U.S. pandemic aid checks

  • Reuters
  • Commodities News
PRECIOUS-Gold flat amid doubts about increased U.S. pandemic aid checks
Credit: © Reuters.

Dec 30 (Reuters) - Gold prices were little changed on Wednesday as investors weighed news that U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell postponed a vote on increased pandemic aid checks to individuals.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Spot gold XAU= was steady at $1,877.76 per ounce by 0043 GMT. U.S. gold futures GCv1 fell 0.1% to $1,881.50.

* McConnell on Tuesday delayed a vote on President Donald Trump's demand to increase COVID-19 relief checks to $2,000, in a rare challenge to his fellow Republican three weeks before he vacates the White House. But Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that the $600 stimulus checks that are part of a $2.3 trillion package signed into law last week would begin as soon as Tuesday evening. Gold has benefited from massive stimulus rolled out to stem the economic impact of the pandemic as it is seen as a hedge against inflation and currency debasement.

* Lending some support to the metal, the U.S. dollar hovered close to a 2-1/2-year trough against rival currencies. USD/

* Meanwhile, vaccine rollouts in Europe gathered pace with the European Union set to buy an extra 100 million doses of Pfizer (NYSE: PFE ) PFE.N and BioNTech's 22UAy.DE COVID-19 vaccine. Coronavirus cases continue to soar globally, with Britain reporting the highest number of new infections since mass testing began in mid-2020, while the first case of a new infectious virus variant was found in the United States. The U.S. Federal Reserve extended the end date for its Main Street Lending Programme by eight days to process a rush of applications submitted since the Trump administration ended the central bank's emergency credit facility. Silver XAG= fell 0.2% to $26.14 an ounce. Platinum XPT= rose 0.1% to $1,050.70 and palladium XPD= gained 0.4% to $2,337.43.

DATA AHEAD (GMT) 0700 UK Dec. Nationwide House Price

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