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AMSTERDAM/LONDON: Gold prices eased off a more than seven-week peak on Monday as US Treasury yields ticked higher, weighing on non-yielding bullion's appeal and countering support from a weaker dollar. Spot gold dipped 0.2% to $1,773.30 per ounce by 10:43 a.m. EDT (1443 GMT), having earlier touched its highest since Feb. 25 at $1,789.77. US gold futures fell 0.4% to $1,772.40 per ounce.

Looking ahead, "we're still probably going to see gradual rise in US interest rates along with gradual steepening of the yield curve and that should take some steam out of gold," said Daniel Ghali, TD Securities commodity strategist. The benchmark 10-year yield rose above 1.6% after hitting a multiweek low last week.

Bullion has dropped 6% so far this year, mostly pressured by surging US yields. But capping gold's declines was a weaker dollar, which earlier fell to a more than six-week low against rivals. Chinese and Indian demand has started to rise again along with central bank purchases, which are likely to offset institutional outflows from gold, keeping gold prices range-bound in the near term, Ghali added.

China, the world's biggest gold consumer, has given domestic and international banks permission to import large amounts of gold into the country, five sources familiar with the matter said. Among other precious metals, silver fell 0.5% to $25.83 per ounce. Platinum gained 0.4% to $1,207.61.

Palladium rose 1.6% to $2,823.13 per ounce, climbing to a peak since February 2020 of $2,845.50.

"Palladium is set to continue to move higher owing to a recovery in automotive output, the increasing probability of rhodium to palladium substitution, and ongoing supply disruptions," Citi research said in a note raising its 0-3 month point price forecast to $3,200 per ounce from $3,000.