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PRECIOUS-Gold ekes out gains as slowdown fears mount, yields retreat

       * U.S Treasury yields fall to session low
    * Weekly jobless claims fall 2,000 to 229,000
    * Silver bars pile up at Russia's Polymetal

 (Adds comments, updates prices)
    By Ashitha Shivaprasad
    June 23 (Reuters) - Gold prices edged up on Thursday as
growing recessions fears and a pull back in U.S. Treasury yields
helped bullion overcome pressure from expectations of aggressive
monetary tightening.
    Spot gold        rose 0.3% to $1,842.85 per ounce by 1411
GMT. U.S. gold futures        inched 0.4% higher to $1,845.20.
    Buoying gold's appeal, especially among overseas buyers, the
dollar index        pared some gains on data showing a dip U.S.
weekly jobless claims last week as labor market conditions
remained tight, though some slowing is emerging.
    Meanwhile, U.S. business activity slowed considerably in
June, a survey showed.
    Gold is going to have some underlying support here due to
the global recession fears, said Edward Moya, senior analyst
with OANDA.
    "In this current environment, there's still a lot of
pessimism and hesitancy to pile into risky assets right now. So
treasury yields might see downside and this is once again good
news for gold."
     U.S. yields fell to their lowest in almost two weeks.
     But while gold is considered a hedge against inflation and
economic uncertainties, rising interest rates reduce appeal for
the asset, which pays no interest.
    Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Wednesday said the Fed is not
trying to engineer a recession to stop inflation but is fully
committed to bringing prices under control even if that risks an
economic downturn.
    Bank of China International analyst Xiao Fu said while gold
will attract buying due to recession risks, the rising rates are
very powerful in terms of impacting asset classes, including
gold.
    Spot silver        rose 0.2% to $21.44 per ounce, platinum
       was down 0.5%, to $922.15. Palladium        gained 0.4%
to $1,870.46.
    Silver bars have piled up at Russia's Polymetal as it seeks
new export destinations to replace Europe. Polymetal, along with
other Russian commodity producers, has been impacted by Western
banks and shippers having reduced dealings with Russian
companies.

 (Reporting by Ashitha Shivaprasad in Bengaluru; editing by
David Evans)

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