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Gold prices eased on Tuesday and the dollar rose against its major rivals as hawkish remarks from some Fed officials supported prospects of a tightening of monetary policy sooner rather later.

Spot gold dipped 0.3 percent to $1,772.31 per ounce, after marking its lowest since June 21 at $1,770.36 on Monday. U.S. gold futures were down half a percent at $1,772.20.

Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin said on Monday that the central bank has made “substantial further progress” toward its inflation goal so as to begin the withdrawal of stimulus.

Barkin added that he would decide next year whether the U.S. central bank had reached its inflation and employment goals to justify a rate hike.

Several Fed policy makers have turned hawkish recently despite a weaker-than-expected U.S. inflation reading last week.

While U.S. Treasury yields held steady at the lower end of their recent range, the dollar hovered below a two-month high against its rivals amid concerns over the imposition of tougher restrictions in countries such as Australia, Malaysia and Thailand. Indonesia is considering imposing stricter restrictions starting Wednesday amid surging infections.

In the U.K, coronavirus cases involving the Delta variant are rising, prompting European nations such as Spain and Portugal to impose new restrictions on travelers.

Investors await U.S. jobs report due on Friday to determine the pace of improvement in the labor market.

Other key economic data due this week include pending home sales, ADP private sector payrolls, jobless claims and ISM manufacturing activity.


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