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Gold was up on Tuesday morning in Asia, staying near a one-week high as U.S. Treasury yields retreated.

Gold futures were up 0.66% at $1,671.75 by 11:54 PM ET (4:55 AM GMT), after gaining 0.15% overnight. The dollar was down on Tuesday, continuing Monday’s retreat as investors focused on the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines and kept up hope of a quick economic recovery.

The world marked the grim milestone of 500,000 U.S. COVID-19 deaths as of Feb. 23, according to Johns Hopkins University. Globally, there are over 21.8 million cases and 2.4 million deaths, the data said.

Benchmark U.S. Treasury yields retreated form near one-year peaks overnight, which lowered the opportunity cost of holding bullion.

Even policymakers had started to express concerns about rising yields, with European Central Bank (EBC) President Christine Lagarde saying on Monday that the central bank is “closely monitoring” the recent rise in government bond yields.

In other central bank news, U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will give his testimony on the Semiannual Monetary Report to Congress later in the day.

Progress on the $1.9 trillion stimulus package proposed by U.S. President Joe Biden also added to inflation concerns. Biden also made changes to the U.S. COVID-19 aid program for small businesses in order to help smaller and minority-owned firms.

Silver eased 0.4% to $28.04 an ounce, platinum dropped 0.4% to $1,267.46, and palladium gained 0.3% to $2,401.52.

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