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LONDON: Gold prices steadied on Wednesday as a softer dollar and a pullback in U.S. Treasury yields buoyed the safe-haven metal ahead of major central bank policy meetings this week and next.

Spot gold was up 0.1% at $1,784.66 an ounce by 1214 GMT after falling as much as 0.6% earlier in the session.

U.S. gold futures were down 0.1% at $1,791.40.

The dollar index fell 0.1% against its rivals while the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury yields slipped to a one week low, decreasing the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.

“Markets are pricing in a higher probability of rate hikes for 2022 ... (with) some traders betting that the Fed could hike rates twice next year,” said Xiao Fu, head of commodities markets strategy at Bank of China International.

With investors awaiting Thursday’s European Central Bank meeting and the U.S. Federal Open Market Committee policy meeting on Nov. 3, the market remained quiet on Wednesday, she added.

The ECB is expected to keep policy unchanged and leave a decision on its pandemic emergency bond purchase programme to December.

“Talking short-term, and considering the ongoing risk-on environment, it seems unlikely that gold will find support,” said ActivTrades senior analyst Ricardo Evangelista.

However, a shift in confidence could arise as the U.S. dollar coming under pressure and other central banks also start tightening policy, he added.

While gold is often considered an inflation hedge, reduced economic stimulus and higher interest rates push government bond yields up, raising the opportunity cost of holding bullion.

Elsewhere, spot silver edged 0.2% down to $24.08 an ounce.

StoneX analyst Rhona O’Connell said interest in silver is building in the professional market and that bodes well for gold.

Platinum fell 0.6% to $1,021.22 an ounce while palladium retreated 2% to $1,971.37.

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