Gold flat on firmer U.S. Dollar, yields; Ukraine conflict in focus

China’s net gold imports through Hong Kong fell 13.7% in February to their lowest level in nearly a year, official data showed, as Lunar New Year holidays and high prices dented demand.

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London: Gold prices were flat on Tuesday as the U.S. dollar held firm at a three-week high scaled in the previous session and yields climbed, while investors refrained from making big bets ahead of Russia-Ukraine peace talks starting later in the day.

Spot gold was flat at $1,925.86 per ounce, as of 0218 GMT. U.S. gold futures were down 0.7% at $1,926.00.

The dollar index held firm near a three-week high hit in the previous session, making gold more expensive for other currency holders.

U.S. benchmark 10-year note hovered close to near three-year highs, and higher yields increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.

Ukraine said its top objective at the first face-to-face talks with Russia in more than two weeks, due to take place in Turkey on Tuesday, is to secure a ceasefire, although both it and the United States were skeptical of a major breakthrough.

China’s net gold imports through Hong Kong fell 13.7% in February to their lowest level in nearly a year, official data showed, as Lunar New Year holidays and high prices dented demand.

China’s financial hub of Shanghai reported a record 4,381 asymptomatic Covid-19 cases and 96 symptomatic cases for March 28, the city government said on its official WeChat account.

Two gold industry associations are working with miners, refiners, traders and shippers to create a database of gold bars in an effort to prevent trade in counterfeit metal and allow buyers of bullion to trace its origin, they said on Monday.

Spot silver was up 0.4% at $24.94 per ounce and platinum edged higher 0.3% to $986.61, while palladium rose 0.8% to $2,250.97.

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