Gold edges up as dollar holds steady

Gold prices inched up in early trade on Thursday as the dollar was nearly unchanged after tumbling in the previous session following the U.S. Federal Reserve’s widely expected decision to raise interest rates, although it left the outlook on rates unchanged.

Spot gold was up 0.15 percent at $1,257.11 an ounce as of 0123 GMT, after rising nearly 1 percent in the previous session.

U.S. gold futures were up nearly 1 percent at $1,260.60.

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, was little changed, after falling 0.7 percent on Wednesday.

The Federal Reserve raised interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point to a range of 1.25 percent to 1.50 percent on Wednesday, with policymakers projecting a short-term jump in U.S. economic growth from the Trump administration’s proposed tax cuts.

Underlying U.S. consumer inflation slowed in November, held down by weak healthcare costs and the biggest drop in apparel prices in nearly two decades, which could impact the pace at which the Federal Reserve raises interest rates next year.

The European Central Bank is likely to bump up some of its economic forecasts on Thursday and may debate tweaking its pledge to keep money at its current, ultra-easy level, but will ultimately reaffirm is policy stance.

Congressional Republicans reached a deal on final tax legislation on Wednesday, clearing the way for final votes next week on a package that would slash the U.S. corporate tax rate to 21 percent and cut taxes for wealthy Americans.

U.S. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Wednesday dismissed Republican lawmakers’ charges that government attorneys and agents investigating allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 election are biased against President Donald Trump.

No negotiations can be held with North Korea until it improves its behavior, a White House official said on Wednesday, raising questions about U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s offer to begin talks with Pyongyang any time and without pre-conditions.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s government was defeated on Wednesday, when lawmakers forced through changes to its Brexit blueprint that ministers said could endanger Britain’s departure from the European Union. Source: Reuters