×

PRECIOUS-Gold prices steady, set for fourth straight weekly gain

Jan 5 (Reuters) - Gold prices held steady on Friday after hitting 3-1/2 month highs in the previous session, remaining on track for their fourth straight weekly gain.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Spot gold was mostly unchanged at $1,322.50 an ounce at 0102 GMT.

* It marked its highest since Sept. 15 at $1,325.86 on Thursday on a weaker dollar.

* Spot gold was on track for its fourth straight weekly climb, rising 1.5 percent so far this week.

* Weighed down by the greenback's weakness against the euro, the dollar index against a basket of six major currencies was poised for a loss of 0.3 percent this week, during which it

probed a three-month low of 91.751 . * U.S. gold futures were up 0.2 percent at $1,323.70

an ounce.

* Spot gold's 14-day relative strength index (RSI) was at 72.59. An RSI above 70 indicates a commodity is overbought and could herald a price correction, technical analysts said.

* U.S. private employers added 250,000 jobs in December, data from ADP Research Institute showed, the biggest monthly increase since March. Economists surveyed by Reuters had forecast a gain of 190,000 jobs.

* With ADP out of the way, investors are now focused on Friday's U.S. non-farm payrolls report, which is expected to show job gains of 190,000 for December.

* Spot palladium hit a record high on Thursday at $1,105.70. It was steady at $1,097.10 on Friday.

* Palladium's price jumped 56 percent last year on fears of a shortage fueled by Chinese car sales growth, tightening emissions controls and a swing away from diesel cars in Europe.

* Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust , the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, fell 0.03 percent to 836.04 tonnes on Thursday from Wednesday.

DATA AHEAD

700 Germany Retail sales Nov 1000 Euro Zone CPI Dec 1000 Euro Zone PPI Nov 1330 U.S. Employment data Dec 1330 U.S. Trade data Nov 1500 U.S. Factory orders Nov 1500 U.S. Durables orders Nov 1500 U.S. ISM Non-manufacturing business index Dec

(Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Joseph Radford)