PRECIOUS-Gold subdued on firm yields with U.S. inflation in focus
Recasts, adds comments, updates prices
By Eileen Soreng
June 9 (Reuters) - Gold inched lower on Thursday pressured by elevated U.S. Treasury yields as the focus turned to U.S. inflation data for the Federal Reserve's interest rate hike plan after the European Central Bank signalled a July increase.
The ECB said it will end bond buys on July 1 then raise rates by 25 basis points later that month. It will hike again in September and may opt for a bigger move then if the inflation outlook fails to improve. nL1N2XW0AB
Spot gold XAU= fell 0.3% to $1,847.59 per ounce by 1249 GMT, little changed after the ECB decision.
U.S. gold futures GCv1 shed 0.3% to $1,850.00.
"It seems to be that the ECB are willing to raise rates, but not go particularly aggressive and that's the sentiment the (gold) market's taking away," said Nitesh Shah, analyst at WisdomTree.
"Inflation upside surprises are always a catalyst for gold price moves... But on the flip side, you got the Fed reacting to these numbers; the market right now is expecting back to back 50 bps rate increases that will act as a headwind," Shah added.
The monthly U.S. consumer price index data on Friday could signal whether the Fed will continue its aggressive policy tightening post July.
The benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yields US10YT=RR held steady near the key 3% threshold, eroding gold's appeal. US/
Rising interest rates increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion, even though the metal is considered a safe haven amid political and economic uncertainties.
"We'll probably have to wait until tomorrow's CPI report before we see a sustainable move in either direction, but we've taken comfort that ETF (exchange-traded fund) flows into gold yesterday were their strongest in a month," City Index senior market analyst Matt Simpson said. GOL/ETF
Spot silver XAG= dipped 0.5% to $21.92 per ounce, while platinum XPT= shed 2.1%, to $984.71. Palladium XPD= fell 0.8% to $1,927.59.
(Reporting by Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru;
Editing by Vinay Dwivedi and Elaine Hardcastle)