March 17 (Reuters) - Gold prices steadied below last session's two-week high on Wednesday as the dollar stood firm, with investors eyeing the outcome of the U.S. Federal Reserve's two-day meeting for its outlook on economy.
* Spot gold XAU= was little changed at $1,730.82 per ounce by 0127 GMT, having risen to $1,740.90 in the last session, its highest since March 1.
* U.S. gold futures GCv1 fell about 0.1% to $1,729.60 per ounce.
* A spate of volatility in money markets has stoked speculation that the U.S. central bank may be forced into a technical adjustment to the levers controlling its benchmark interest rate to ensure that it does not fall too low, but few expect it to act on the matter at this week's meeting. Asian stocks were set to open mostly lower following a sell-off in U.S. stocks. MKTS/GLOB .N
* U.S. retail sales fell more than expected in February amid cold weather across the country, but a rebound is likely as the government disburses another round of pandemic relief money. Nornickel GMKN.MM , the world's largest palladium producer and a leading nickel producer, expects its 2021 nickel, copper , platinum and palladium output to fall 15%-20% short of original outlook due to waterlogging at two Siberian mines. Palladium jumped about 5% and scaled to a one-year high of $2,520.31 in the preceding session.
* One of the world's biggest gold refiners said on Tuesday it had developed a way to quickly confirm where gold had been mined, potentially stopping illegal gold from entering supply chains. Silver XAG= fell 0.7% to $25.77, platinum XPT= slid 0.5% to $1,206 and palladium XPD= slipped 0.2% to $2,494.05
DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 1000 EU HICP Final MM, YY
Feb 1230 US Housing Starts Number Feb 1800 US Federal Open Market Committee announces
its decision on interest rates followed by statement
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