PRECIOUS-Gold steady as dollar gains on fears of economic slowdown

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BENGALURU, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Gold prices were steady onTuesday, pressured by a firm dollar on the back of concerns overslowing global growth, but well supported by expectations theU.S. Federal Reserve could refrain from raising interest ratesthis year.


* Spot gold XAU= was flat at $1,291.24 per ounce at 0114GMT.

* Asian shares were on the back foot on Tuesday as surprisefalls in China's exports stoked worries about the globaleconomy, while the U.S. dollar was marginally higher against itspeers. MKTS/GLOBUSD/

* Chinese data on Monday showed imports fell 7.6 percentyear-on-year in December, while analysts had predicted a5-percent rise. Exports dropped 4.4 percent, confoundingexpectations for a 3-percent gain, pointing to further weakeningin the world's second-largest economy.

* Also fanning fears was a fall in euro zone industrialoutput in November, which confirmed a series of weak nationaldata that has raised concerns about the bloc's growth in thefinal quarter of the year.

* Market participants think that worries of slowing domesticand global growth as well as tame U.S. inflation will make Fedpolicymakers hesitant to raise interest rates in the world'slargest economy.

* UK Prime Minister Theresa May urged lawmakers on Monday totake a "second look" at her deal to leave the European Union, alast-ditch effort to win over a parliament that looks set toreject the agreement.

* May warned that failure to approve her Brexit deal couldlead to Britain eventually staying in the European Union.

* Meanwhile, investors are still eyeing developments intrade between the United States and China, with U.S. officialsexpecting a visit by Beijing's top trade negotiator this monthafter mid-level discussions between the two countries ended on aseemingly positive note.

* Newmont Mining CorpNEM.N said on Monday it would buysmaller rival Goldcorp IncG.TO , GG.N for $10 billion,creating the world's biggest gold producer in the face ofdwindling easy-to-find reserves of the precious metal.

* South Africa'sAssociation of Mineworkers and ConstructionUnion (AMCU) is planning to strike at Sibanye-Stillwater'sSGLJ.J local platinum operations, it said on Monday, expandingan earlier stoppage affecting its gold facilities.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)0745 France CPI Dec0800 Germany Full Year GDP 20181100 Brazil Retail Sales Nov1330 US NY Fed Manufacturing Jan1330 US PPI Final Demand Dec1330 US PPI exFood/Energy Dec (Reporting by Karthika Suresh Namboothiri in Bengaluru; Editingby Joseph Radford) ((; +91 80 67490997 (If within U.S. call 651-848-5832); Reuters

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