United States retail sales and CPI higher in September

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Gold prices were little changed amid a steady dollar on Friday, halting a five-day rally as investors wait for key US inflation data for clues on the outlook for potential hikes in USA interest rates.

"The firmness in retail sales should override the enduring mystery of low inflation to spur a December Fed rate hike", said BMO Capital Markets senior economist Sal Guatieri in Toronto.

Consumer prices in the USA increased by slightly less than expected in the month of September, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Friday.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index .FTEU3 rose 0.22 percent and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe .MIWD00000PUS gained 0.24 percent.

"There is really no fig leaf to cover up this notion that inflation is weak, and it's weak in a very broad sense", said Aaron Kohli, an interest rate strategist at BMO Capital Markets in NY.

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U.S. Treasury prices gained after the Treasury Department saw strong demand for a sale of 30-year bonds.

The annual average inflation, measured by CPI, in the last 12 months (October 2016 - September 2017) compared to the previous 12 months (October 2015 - September 2016) was 1.3%. Sterling was last trading at $1.3261, up 0.30 percent on the day.

"People got a little bit spoiled by the very nice advances we saw in the first and second quarter, but keep in mind that earnings started perking up in the third quarter of last year so the year-over-year comparisons might not look as robust", said John Carey, portfolio manager at Pioneer Investment Management in Boston.

Stock indexes were broadly higher, with the Dow rising 0.2% and the S&P 500 up 0.1%. Core prices had been expected to rise by another 0.2 percent.

September's rise was the biggest since January and pushed up the year-on-year CPI gain to 2.2 per cent from 1.9 per cent in August.

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The 30-year bond last rose 9/32 in price to yield 2.8388 percent, from 2.853 percent late on Thursday.

Sterling last traded at $1.3273, up 0.39 percent on the day.

US crude fell 1.29 percent to $50.64 per barrel and Brent was last at $56.32, down 1.09 percent.

Oil prices rebounded from earlier losses, although they were still down on the session, after the U.S. Energy Department reported a larger-than-expected decline in U.S. inventories and a falloff in weekly production.

December gold settled at USD1,304.60/oz, up USD8.10, or 0.6%.

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