Gold price holds near 1-1/2-week high as Bernanke backs stimulus
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke strongly defended the US central bank's stimulus measures before Congress on Tuesday, easing fears it would cease buying bonds through so-called quantitative easing sooner rather than later.
"The market is a little less concerned about a premature exit of quantitative easing, which would be bad for gold," said Nick Trevethan, senior commodity strategist at ANZ in Singapore.
The three rounds of QE from the Fed have helped gold stage a record-breaking rally in the past few years, as investors worried about currency debasement due to money-printing seek to store value in gold.
In recent months, concerns that the central bank could exit the policy on signs of a fledgling economic recovery have weighed on the metal.
As a gauge of investor interest, holdings of the SPDR Gold Trust, the world's top gold-backed exchange-traded fund, fell 2.408 tonnes from the previous session to 1,270.44 tonnes on Feb. 26 in its sixth session of decline.
US housing data on the previous session showed that the property market, a pillar of the world's top economy, was on the mend, but the job market, which the Fed has pegged its policy to, remains sluggish.
Spot gold was little changed at $1,612.31 an ounce by 0218 GMT, after hitting a 1-1/2-week high of $1,619.66. It rose 1.2 percent on Tuesday,
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