MTECHTIPS;-Gold holds steady in quiet trade as U.S. holiday mutes

MTECHTIPS;-Gold holds steady in quiet trade as U.S. holiday mutes action

MTECHTIPS- Gold prices were little changed during North American morning hours on Monday, with investors hesitant to take strong positions due to the U.S. national holiday for Presidents Day. Gold for April delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange was steady at $1,238.95 a troy ounce by 9:15 AM ET (14:15 GMT). Trading activity was likely to stay light as markets in the U.S. remain closed for President’s Day on Monday. Market players awaited further hints on the timing of the next U.S. rate hike. In the week ahead, global financial markets will focus on minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest policy meeting as well as housing-related data for more clues on the timing of the next U.S. rate hike. There are also more than a few Fed speakers this week, including Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashmir, Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Darker and Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart. Cleveland Federal Reserve President Loretta Mister said in a speech in Singapore on Monday she would be “comfortable” raising interest rates at this point if the economy maintained its current pace of performance. Fed Chair Janet Yellen said last week that the U.S. central bank will likely need to raise interest rates at an upcoming meeting, although she flagged considerable uncertainty over economic policy under the Donald Trump administration

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