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Gold hits over 3-month high on lower U.S. bond yields

05/17/2021 | 06:32am EDT

* U.S. Fed minutes due on Wed in focus

* Silver hits one-week high

* Spot gold may rise to $1,876/oz -Reuters technical analyst

May 17 (Reuters) - Gold prices hit a 3-1/2 month high on Monday as a dip in U.S. Treasury yields and persistent inflation worries in the bullion market burnished its appeal.

Spot gold rose 0.4% to $1,848.66 per ounce by 1220 GMT, after hitting its highest since Feb. 2. U.S. gold futures gained 0.5% to $1,848.00.

"Higher than expected (U.S.) consumer price inflation and weaker retail sales was really the potent combination for gold," said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank.

"Higher inflation has been the key source of inspiration for renewed demand that we have seen in gold, especially during the last couple of weeks."

U.S. economic readings last week showed April U.S. retail sales unexpectedly stalled and a bigger-than-expected rise in consumer prices.

The Fed sought to ease market concerns about rising inflation after the data, keeping a lid on U.S. Treasury yields.

Benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yields slipped to their lowest in nearly a week, reducing the opportunity cost of holding non-interest bearing gold.

Investors now await minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserve's last meeting due on Wednesday for more cues on the central bank's monetary policy and any comments on inflation.

Gold is seen as a hedge against rising inflation.

SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its holdings rose 0.4% to 1,028.36 tonnes on Friday.

Spot gold may rise to $1,876 per ounce, as it has broken a resistance at $1,847, according to Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

Elsewhere, platinum rose 0.2% to $1,227.32 per ounce.

The World Platinum Investment Council (WPIC) earlier said the global platinum market will be more undersupplied this year than it previously thought as economic recovery fuels a surge in demand from industry.

Palladium inched 0.1% higher to $2,895.87 per ounce, while silver rose 0.6% to $27.58.

(Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman and Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise and Jason Neely)

ę Reuters 2021
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