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   “¢   The prevalent USD selling bias/Fed rate hike expectations lend some support.
   “¢   US-China trade optimism dampens safe-haven demand and seemed to cap gains.
   “¢   This week’s key event/macro data from the US might provide a fresh directional impetus.

Gold lacked any firm direction and seesawed between tepid gains/minor losses, around the $1330 region through the early European session on Monday.

A combination of diverging factors failed to provide any meaningful impetus and led to a subdued/range-bound price action at the start of a new trading week. The prevalent US Dollar selling bias was seen as one of the key factors underpinning demand for the dollar-denominated commodity.  

This coupled with firming market expectations that the Fed might refrain from raising interest rate further in 2019 extended some additional support to the non-yielding yellow metal, though a fresh wave of risk-on trade dampened safe-haven demand and kept a lid on any strong up-move.

The US President Donald Trump’s tweet on Sunday, saying that he would delay a hike in US tariffs on Chinese goods – originally scheduled for March 1, further fueled the latest optimism over a possible resolution to the US-China trade disputes and boosted investors’ appetite for riskier assets.

Investors, however, seemed reluctant to place any aggressive bets ahead of the Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s semiannual testimony on Tuesday and Wednesday. This coupled with the advanced Q4 US GDP print and the closely watched US monthly jobs report (NFP), might help determine the next leg of a directional move.

Technical levels to watch

Any meaningful up-move is likely to confront immediate resistance near the $1338-40 region, above which the metal is likely to surpass multi-month tops, around the $1346-47 area, and aim towards testing the $1352-53 supply zone. On the flip side, the $1323-22 region now seems to protect the immediate downside, which if broken might accelerate the slide towards $1314 horizontal level en-route $1305 support area.