BENGALURU, July 18 (Reuters) - Gold prices held steady on Tuesday near two-week highs hit in the previous session, as the dollar hovered near multi-month lows on fading prospects for further U.S.
rate hikes this year. FUNDAMENTALS * Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at $1,234.48 per ounce at 0033 GMT, after hitting its highest since July 3 at $1,235.94 in the previous session. * U.S. gold futures for August delivery were mostly unchanged at $1,233.80 per ounce.
* SPDR Gold Trust , the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its holdings fell 0.21 percent to 827.07 tonnes on Monday from 828.84 tonnes on Friday. * The U.S. dollar was near a 10-month low against a basket of major currencies on Tuesday, pressured by uncertainty over the pace of the Federal Reserve's policy tightening.
* Banks expect gold to match its 2016 average this year, but cut their silver price forecasts after the metal slid 9 percent in the second quarter. A poll conducted by Reuters this month returned an average silver price forecast of $17.32 an ounce for 2017, down from an average view of $17.98 in a similar poll conducted three months ago.
* Palladium is expected to hit its highest annual average Price of Gold live
on records going back three decades this year after tightness in the lending market pushed prices to 16-year highs last month. * South Korea on Monday proposed military talks with North Korea, the first formal overture to Pyongyang by the government of President Moon Jae-in, to discuss ways to avoid hostile acts near the heavily militarised border.
* The United States on Monday launched the first salvo in the renegotiation of the 23-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), saying its top priority for the talks was shrinking the U.S. trade deficit with Canada and Mexico. * London's economy is wobbling from the early effects of Brexit judging from the capital's faltering housing market, fewer European Union citizens seeking work and weaker job
creation, according to a report from the Centre for London think tank.DATA EXPECTED
ON JULY 18 (GMT) 1230 U.S. Import, Export prices June 1255 U.S. Redbook weekly 1400 U.S. NAHB Housing Market Indx July 2000 U.S. Overall Net Capital Flow May (Reporting by Arpan Varghese in Bengaluru)