(Adds comments, updates prices)
* Gold range-bound between $1,300 and $1325/oz -analyst
* Silver, platinum on track for second week of declines
* Palladium heads towards second weekly gain
By K. Sathya Narayanan
Feb 15 - Gold rose to its highest in two weeks on Friday after
weak U.S. economic data compounded concern over a global slowdown and
dialled down the chances of the U.S. Federal Reserve raising interest
rates this year.
Spot gold was up 0.4 percent at $1,317.96 an ounce at 1214 GMT,
having touched its highest since Feb. 1 at $1,319.22, keeping prices
on track for a small weekly gain.
U.S. gold futures rose 0.6 percent to $1,322.
"The weak retail sales data from the U.S. in the previous
session falls in line with general expectations that the Fed will not
be pushing through with monetary tightening as hard as they were
planning," said SP Angel analyst Sergey Raevskiy.
Gold gained 0.5 percent in the previous session after weak U.S.
retail sales data, along with soft inflation numbers on Wednesday,
added to disquiet about slowing growth, which could allow the Fed to
hold interest rates steady for a while.
The disappointing U.S. data followed a spate of weak economic
reports from China and Europe.
This helped gold to hold its ground amid a slight rebound in the
dollar , which stayed close to a two-month peak against a basket of
currencies, with the market awaiting developments in trade talks
between Washington and Beijing.
Two White House negotiators will meet with Chinese President Xi
Jinping later on Friday, U.S. President Donald Trump's economic
adviser, Larry Kudlow, said on Thursday.
"The market is just waiting for a breakthrough. So long as
China-U.S. trade concerns are lingering in the market, investors are
in ambiguity about where they should go," said Vandana Bharti,
assistant vice-president of commodity research at SMC Comtrade.
Investors have generally looked to the dollar in the search for
safety from the trade dispute, strengthening the currency and making
dollar-priced gold costlier for buyers holding other currencies.
Also offering limited support to bullion was the continuing
uncertainty surrounding Brexit, with increasing expectations that
Britain could leave the European Union next month without a deal,
"Bullion is still trading in a lateral channel between $1,300
and $1,325. A rise above the intermediate resistance placed at
$1,315/$1,316 will offer a first positive impulse, opening the floor
to another attack to $1,325," ActivTrades chief analyst Carlo
Alberto De Casa said in a note.
In other precious metals, palladium was up 0.5 percent at
$1,422.44 an ounce, on track for a second consecutive weekly gain.
Platinum gained 0.5 percent to $789.69 but was set for a second
straight weekly fall. Silver firmed by 0.1 percent to $15.64 but
was also heading for its second weekly decline, down about 1 percent
(Reporting by K. Sathya Narayanan and Karthika Suresh Namboothiri in
Bengaluru Editing by Louise Heavens and David Goodman)
((Sathya.Narayanan@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 651 848 5832,
outside U.S. +91 80 6749 3226/1298; Reuters Messaging: firstname.lastname@example.org))