PRECIOUS-Gold steadies as N. Korea, global trade concerns ease

(Recasts with updated prices, adds quote and details)

* Gold heads for a third straight quarterly rise

* Silver set post its worst quarter in three

* Platinum to post worst month since September

* Palladium on track for worst quarter since end-2015

BENGALURU, March 29 (Reuters) - Gold prices held largely steady on Thursday, a day after posting its biggest one-day percentage fall in nearly 9 months, as tensions over North Korea and global trade eased.

Spot gold was nearly unchanged at $1,325.16 per ounce

at 0736 GMT, after hitting a low of $1,322.50 earlier in the session, it's lowest since March 21. Prices dropped 1.5 percent on Wednesday, their biggest one-day percentage decline since July 3, 2017.

U.S. gold futures for April delivery were steady at

$1,324 per ounce. "There was a premium in the (gold) price due to both the trade issue and with the North Korea. Both of these tensions look to be less inflamed currently," said Cameron Alexander, an analyst with Thomson Reuters-owned metals consultancy GFMS. North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un pledged his commitment to denuclearisation and meet U.S. officials, China said on Wednesday after his meeting with President Xi Jinping, who promised China would uphold friendship with its isolated neighbour. Gold, often seen as an alternative investment during times of political and financial uncertainty, was on track for a third straight quarter of gains, having risen nearly 2 percent so far. Concerns about the global trade war have eased but that doesn't mean it is over, said Brian Lan, managing director at dealer GoldSilver Central in Singapore. U.S. President Donald Trump's tariffs on Chinese goods may not be imposed until early June, administration officials said on Wednesday, with public consultations and potential tariff revisions buying time for negotiations to forestall them.

In other precious metals, spot silver was steady

after falling to $16.20 per ounce, its lowest in one week. Silver was on track to post its worst quarter in three.

Platinum rose 0.5 percent to $936.30 per ounce, after

hitting a near three-month low in the previous session. The metal was down about 5 percent so far this month, on course to post its worst month since September.

Palladium was up 0.3 percent to $968.90 an ounce.

Palladium was set to fall over 7 percent this month, the steepest drop since December 2016. For the quarter, the metal is down more than 8 percent so far, its worst since the quarter ended December 2015.

(Reporting by Swati Verma and Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips and Amrutha Gayathri)