Gold Prices Hover Around $1,300 at Start of Busy Week By

© Reuters. – Gold prices edged higher on Monday, as investors looked ahead to a busy week likely to be dominated by the Federal Reserve’s regular policy meeting.

Comex inched up $1.85, or around 0.15%, to $1,304.75 a troy ounce by 8:05AM ET (12:05 GMT).

Meanwhile, was trading at $1,304.90 per ounce, up own $2.68, or roughly 0.2%.

While the U.S. central bank is not expected to take action on interest rates, investors will be watching for changes in its rhetoric and forecasts to see whether a recent spate of weak economic data could lead it to loosen its monetary policy stance.

What the Fed says may also influence or be reflected in other central bank meetings taking place this week around the world. The and are due to meet on Thursday, while – the world’s largest gold buyer last year – meets on Friday.

Policymakers have pointed to two increases in 2019, but a recent wave of underwhelming U.S. economic data, along with worries over the ongoing U.S.-China trade conflict, have underlined expectations the Fed may pause its rate-hiking cycle altogether this year.

The two-day meeting ends with a news conference on Wednesday.

Traders currently expect there will be no interest rate hike this year, and are even building in bets for a rate cut in 2020.

The , which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.2% at 95.85, the weakest since Feb. 28.

“With lack of any other news, the inspiration (for gold) is coming from a softer dollar,” Saxo Bank analyst Ole Hansen said.

In other metals trading, tacked on 2.8 cents, or about 0.2%, to trade at $15.35 a troy ounce.

Meanwhile, added 0.2% to $1,521.20 an ounce, while gained 0.6% to $837.15 an ounce.

— Reuters contributed to this report

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