Gold steady as Spain auction eyed


Spot gold gained 0.2 percent to $1,643.29 an ounce
by 0024 GMT, holding above the key 200-day moving average at
about $1,636.	

U.S. gold inched up 0.3 percent to $1,644.30.	

Worries about the euro zone debt crisis mounted on
Wednesday, after Fitch warned the European Central Bank to ramp
up its debt purchases to avoid a "cataclysmic" collapse of the
single currency, sinking the euro to its 16-month low against
the dollar.
    * Spain will hold the first bond auction of the year later
in the day, just hours before the ECB's first monetary policy
announcement and interest rate decision for 2012.

Investors will also watch December economic data from
China due on Thursday. Annual inflation is expected to have
eased for the fifth consecutive month. Along with weakening
economic activity, it could lead to further policy easing.

Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest
gold-backed exchange-traded fund, edged down 0.4 tonnes to
1,254.159 tonnes by Jan 11, after staying unchanged for more
than two weeks. 	

U.S. stocks held firm near recent five-month highs on
Wednesday as investors awaited key bond market tests for Europe
in the next two days that could determine the direction of the
euro zone crisis. 	

The euro remained in the doldrums in Asia on Thursday,
having lurched to a fresh 16-month low on the dollar as markets
turned nervous ahead of a bond sale by Spain. 

 

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