BENGALURU - Gold hovered near a two-week low on Wednesday as the dollar remained buoyant ahead of a speech by U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell that is expected to offer clues on the central bank's monetary policy.
Spot gold was down 0.1 percent at $1,213.62 per ounce at 1103 GMT, having dipped to its lowest level since Nov. 15 at $1,211.36 in the previous session.
U.S. gold futures were flat at $1,213.20.
"The dollar is slightly stronger again that is largely dictating gold prices at the moment. Until the Fed Chairman's speech, we are not going to see much movement," ING analyst Warren Patterson said.
"Gold should stay fairly range-bound in the short term. I struggle to see it breaking below $1,200 and likewise on the upside until the end of this year I struggle to see it breaking above $1,250 as well."
The dollar index rose to its highest since Nov 13. The currency has risen for previous three sessions, taking it near its year high of 97.69.
The dollar gained momentum after Fed Vice Chair Richard Clarida on Tuesday backed further interest rate hikes, weighing on non-interest bearing bullion.
Investors will also focus on minutes from the Fed's November policy meeting that will be released on Thursday. U.S. President Donald Trump criticized the Fed on Tuesday, saying rising interest rates and other Fed policies were damaging the U.S. economy.
"As we go into 2019 people are becoming a bit more worried about dollar as we start seeing a slowing growth in the U.S., and we might see an upside in gold," Patterson said.
The G20 summit later this week is also on investors' radar, with all eyes on a meeting between Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping.
Trump said earlier this week it was "highly unlikely" he would accept China's request to hold off a planned increase in tariffs.
Expectations are that the dollar will remain firm ahead of the G20, weighing on the metal, which has slipped below $1,220, traders at MKS PAMP said in a note.
"Initial support sits at $1,210, however $1,200 may be tested over the coming sessions. On the top-side $1,220 now looms as a key resistance level and pivot point for the metal."
Among other precious metals, spot silver rose 0.1 percent to $14.16 per ounce, having fallen to a near two-week low of $14.05 in the previous session. Palladium gained 0.6 percent to $1,157.24 per ounce.
Platinum was up 0.2 percent at $831.20 per ounce. Prices hit their lowest since Nov. 15 at $825.25 on Tuesday.
The global platinum market will be oversupplied by around half a million ounces both this year and next, an industry report said, suggesting little respite for producers facing prices languishing near 10-year lows.