Gold prices edged lower on Thursday on a firm dollar after policy meeting minutes showed U.S. Federal Reserve officials were largely on board to start easing bond purchases this year.
* Spot gold fell 0.2% to $1,784.05 per ounce by 0115 GMT. U.S. gold futures was little changed at $1,785.30.
* The dollar index scaled a 4-1/2-month peak, making gold expensive for holders of other currencies.
* Fed officials felt their employment benchmark for decreasing support for the economy “could be reached this year,” but appeared to disagree on other key aspects of where monetary policy should turn next in the transition from the pandemic crisis, according to minutes from July’s policy meeting.
* They also noted the risks that rising COVID-19 cases associated with the spread of the Delta variant could dampen the economic recovery.
* SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its holdings fell 0.2% to 1,015.1 tonnes on Wednesday from 1,017.14 tonnes on Tuesday.
* Silver fell 0.4% to $23.39 per ounce. Platinum was flat at $994.52.
* Palladium inched 0.1% lower to $2,423.98, having hit an over five-month low of $2,412.52 on Wednesday.
DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 1230 US Initial Jobless Clm Weekly 1230 US Philly Fed Business Indx August.