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PRECIOUS-Gold steady, on track for first monthly loss in three

Sept 29 (Reuters) - Gold prices held steady early on Friday just above the previous session's six-week low, supported by a weaker dollar, but remained on course for their biggest monthly fall this year.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Spot gold was nearly unchanged at $1,286.86 per ounce at 0044 GMT, on track for a monthly drop of about 2.7 percent. That would mark its largest monthly decline so far in 2017 and the first such fall in three months.

* The metal was also on track for a third straight weekly decline, although it looks set to end the quarter up around 3.7 percent.

* U.S. gold futures for December delivery edged up 0.1 percent to $1,289.80 per ounce.

* The dollar slipped against a basket of currencies on Thursday, snapping a three-day winning streak, as investors looked to take profits on the greenback's rally this week ahead of the end of the quarter.

* Stocks globally rose modestly as investors digested U.S. economic data and the prospects for a U.S. tax reform plan proposed by President Donald Trump.

* The U.S. economy expanded a bit faster than previously estimated in the second quarter, recording its quickest rate of growth in more than two years, but the momentum likely slowed in the third quarter due to the impact of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

* The White House struggled on Thursday to defend its new tax plan against criticism that it would help the rich at the expense of lower classes, as Republicans in Congress prepared to move ahead with actual legislation.

* The World Gold Council (WGC) plans to form a committee soon to help set up India's first spot gold exchange within 12 to 18 months, a senior official from the industry body said on Thursday.

* Japan's core consumer prices rose 0.7 percent in August from a year earlier, government data showed on Friday. The core consumer price index, which includes oil products but excludes fresh food prices, compared with economists' median estimate for a 0.7 percent annual gain.

* Japan's industrial output rose 2.1 percent in August from the previous month, preliminary government data showed on Friday.

DATA/EVENT AHEAD (GMT)

- 0830 U.K. GDP Q2 - 1230 U.S. Personal Income Aug - 1345 U.S. Chicago PMI Sept - 1400 U.S. U Mich Sentiment Final Sept - 1430 U.S. ECRI weekly index Weekly

(Reporting by Nithin Prasad in Bengaluru; Editing by Joseph Radford)