Gold subdued as investors await policy cues from Fed meeting
* SPDR Gold ETF holdings slip to over 2 month-low
* Dollar holds steady below recent highs
By Eileen Soreng
July 27 (Reuters) - Gold eased on Tuesday as the dollar ticked higher, while investors focused on this week's U.S. Federal Reserve meeting for clues about when the central bank might rein in its easy monetary policies.
Spot gold XAU= fell 0.1% to $1,794.68 per ounce by 0656 GMT. U.S. gold futures GCv1 eased 0.3% to $1,793.60.
The Fed's two-day meeting will start on Tuesday and a policy statement will be issued at 1800 GMT on Wednesday, followed by a news conference by Fed Chairman Jerome Powell.
Investors will be looking at how the Fed responds to fast-rising prices while facing increasing threat posed by the more contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus.
"The market has perhaps underestimated the adverse impact that the Delta variant could bring to economic rebound and give central banks reason to delay tapering," said Margaret Yang, a strategist at DailyFX.
In the medium term, gold prices will have more room to go up if central banks continue to implement their accommodative monetary policies, she added.
Stimulus measures tend to support gold, which is often considered a hedge against inflation and currency debasement.
Meanwhile, the dollar index =USD was up 0.1%, making gold more expensive for holders of other currencies.
Gold was likely to remain range-bound until the Fed meeting outcome, analysts said.
"A daily close below $1,790.00 an ounce would suggest a deeper correction to the critical support at $1,750.00 an ounce," Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst, Asia Pacific at OANDA said.
"However, the charts indicate that gold is, in fact, quietly consolidating at these levels in preparation for a resumption of the longer-term uptrend."
Holdings of the SPDR Gold Trust GLD , the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, fell 0.2% to 1,025.64 tonnes on Monday, the lowest since May 13.
Elsewhere, silver XAG= was flat at $25.16 per ounce, palladium XPD= dropped 0.5% to $2,644.19, and platinum XPT= fell 0.6% to $1,057.50.
Reporting by Eileen Soreng and Arundhati Sarkar in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips, Subhranshu Sahu and Jane Merriman
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