PRECIOUS-Gold steady amid mixed signals on U.S.-China trade talks

Nov 22 (Reuters) - Gold prices were little changed on Friday as a report of China's efforts to smooth the way for trade talks with the United States offset worries that an interim deal might not occur until next year.


* Spot gold was flat at $1,464.99 per ounce by 0106

GMT, while U.S. gold futures inched higher 0.05% to


* China has invited top U.S. trade negotiators for a new round of face-to-face talks in Beijing amid continued efforts to strike at least a limited deal, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing unnamed sources.

* China will strive to reach the agreement with the United States as both sides keep communication channels open, the Chinese commerce ministry said.

* Washington passed two bills earlier this week intended to support protesters in Hong Kong and send a warning to China on its human rights policies.

* Asian equities rose but gains were limited by persistent worries over the trade dispute.

* U.S. President Donald Trump's former Russia adviser Fiona Hill urged lawmakers in the House of Representatives impeachment inquiry on Thursday not to promote "politically driven falsehoods" that cast doubt on Russia's interference in the 2016 U.S. election.

* The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits was unexpectedly unchanged at a five-month high last week, suggesting some softening in the labour market.

* Japan's annual core consumer inflation ticked up only marginally in October despite the boost from a sales tax hike during the month.

* Silver was little changed at $17.10 per ounce,

palladium was flat at $1,760.76 per ounce and platinum

edged down 0.4%, to $911.66.

* A surge in investment buying will push the global platinum market into a small deficit this year the first since 2016 but a hefty surplus will return in 2020, the World Platinum Investment Council said.


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(Reporting by Diptendu Lahiri in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)