Gold edges down, extends losses to third day
U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner's offer to accept a tax rate increase for the wealthiest Americans removes a key Republican road block to a deal resolving the year-end "fiscal cliff."
But there is no imminent sight of an agreement, as President Barack Obama will face stiff Democratic opposition to cuts in entitlement spending.
Gold barely responded to the news, and moved in a narrow range below $1,700 an ounce, after falling for the third straight week, despite a fresh bond buying scheme announced by the Federal Reserve last week.
"Participation is really low right now," said a Hong Kong-based trader, "It hasn't been a very exciting year for most people and I don't think they want to stick around for the last week and a half. People want to put away everything before starting on a totally clean slate in 2013."
Spot gold inched down 0.2 percent to $1,691.60 an ounce by 0341 GMT, after falling nearly half a percent in the previous week. U.S. gold was also down 0.2 percent, at $1,693.20.
In the currency market, the yen slumped to its lowest against the dollar in more than a year and a half after Japan's conservative Liberal Democratic Party won the Sunday election, with investors expecting aggressive monetary easing from the new government.
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