Gold pares losses as dollar comes off seven-week high - 2 Mar 2017

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Gold pares losses as dollar comes off seven-week high.
Fed comments dominate as Trump offers no detail on stimulus. Focus shifts to Fed Chair Janet Yellen's Friday speech. Dollar index pares gains after tapping seven-week high (New throughout, updates prices, market activity and comments, ads second byline. Gold gave back most of its losses on Wednesday as the dollar pared gains and bullion shrugged off earlier pressure from U.S. Federal Reserve officials' comments that raised expectations of an interest rate hike in March. New York Fed President William Dudley, one of the most influential U.S. central bankers, said the case for tightening monetary policy had become "a lot more compelling," while San Francisco Fed President John Williams said he saw "no need to delay" raising rates.The perceived probability of a March rate hike jumped to 67.5 percent from roughly 30 percent after the Fed officials' comments on Tuesday, according to Thomson Reuter’s data. "The initial reaction was a major sell-off. A lot of people are skeptical over how the percent changed drastically," said Phillip Sterile, senior commodities broker for RJO Futures in Chicago, referring to geopolitical risks.

Hunan to Push Safety Inspections at Huayuan Lead-Zinc Mining Area in 2017.
Hunan Administration of Work Safety announced February 27 it will inspect lead-zinc mine goaf with significant safety problems, according to hunan.voc.com. The deadline of such inspections is December 31, 2017.Noranda Income Fund decided to postpone announcement for 2017’s zinc output and sales estimation due to continuous strike at Noranda zinc plant in Quebec, Canada, wenhua.com reported.How long the strike will last is still uncertain, which started February 12. The number of US initial jobless claims last week and Challenger Layoffs in February, euro zone inflation and unemployment will be the focus of markets today. Base metals received a boost from Trump’s statement on infrastructure construction overnight. But as no details were released, base metals may fall today.Eurozone annualized January PPI is expected to rise noticeably. Eurozone February CPI before seasonal adjustment will extend gains. German flash February CPI rose to 2.2, better than expectations and January’s, and the highest in 4.5 years, boding well for euro zone inflation.

Oil falls for 3rd day as U.S. inventories hit record high.
Crude oil fell for a third consecutive session on Thursday as a record build-up in U.S. stockpiles weighed on the market, with producers boosting shale oil production. Crude stockpiles in the United States, the world's top oil consumer, rose by 1.5 million barrels last week, less than forecast, but touching a record at 520.2 million barrels after eight straight weekly builds. Still, oil remained locked within a tight trading range as strict OPEC compliance with output cuts offset rising U.S. oil reserves. "Crude oil prices are unable to break out of the increasingly tight range they have been trading in for the past month," ANZ said in a note.The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) reduced its oil output for a second month in February, a Reuter’s survey found, showing the exporter group has boosted already strong compliance to around 94 percent. Heftier cuts by Saudi Arabia and Angola helped offset weaker compliance by other members that agreed to limit their output.

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