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Gold prices ease in Asia as talks brokered between Ukraine-Russia

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Shutterstock photo - - Gold prices fell in Asia on Monday with talks on resolving tensions between Russia and the Ukraine seen as possibly defusing a wider crisis.

Ukraine said it destroyed armored vehicles that had been seen entering the country from Russia on Friday.

At the weekend. Germany's top diplomat on Sunday brought together his Russian, Ukrainian and French counterparts "to attempt to make steps toward making a cease-fire possible" in eastern Ukraine, although the minister damped hopes of a breakthrough from the meeting at a Berlin lakeside retreat.

Discussions will focus on ending the violence in Ukraine, Steinmeier said, rather than debating Moscow's plan to send what it says is humanitarian aid to the rebel-held territories in the region.

On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold for December delivery traded at $1,303.70 a troy ounce, down 0.19%, after setting last week at $1,306.20 a troy ounce. Prices dropped to $1,293.00 an ounce earlier in the day, the lowest since August 6.

The precious metal is often seen as a haven investment in times of geopolitical uncertainty.

Gold prices however sold off sharply earlier in the session as strong U.S. economic data underlined the view that the recovery is gaining momentum.

The Federal Reserve said U.S. industrial production rose 0.4% in July, beating expectations for a 0.3% gain.

A separate report showed that U.S. producer price inflation rose 0.1% on year last month, in line with expectations. Core producer price inflation, which excludes food, energy and trade, rose 0.2% in July, also in line with market projections.

In the week ahead, investors will be anticipating an annual meeting of top central bank officials and economists in Jackson Hole, Wyoming from August 21 to 23.

The spotlight will be on Fed Chair Janet Yellen, who will speak on Friday in her first appearance at Jackson Hole as head of the U.S. central bank.

Gold traders will also pay close attention to the minutes of the Fed's July policy meeting due to be published on Wednesday for further clues about the timing of future interest rate hikes.

Also on the Comex, silver for September delivery traded at $19.553 a troy ounce, up 0.14%, after settling last week at $19.52 a troy ounce, the lowest since June 17.

Copper for September delivery fell 0.07% to $3.105 a pound after settling last week at $3.173 a pound by close of trade.

Despite modest gains Friday, Comex copper prices fell 2.2%, or 7.0 cents, on the week, amid indications of a slowdown in demand from China, the world's largest consumer of the industrial metal.

Prices of the industrial metal hit $3.082 a pound on Thursday, the lowest since June 20, after data showed that Chinese industrial production rose at an annualized rate of 9% in July, slowing from an increase of 9.2% a month earlier. offers an extensive set of professional tools for the financial markets.

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