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Gold Gains on China ETF Reports

Updated from 10:43 a.m. EDT with settlement prices and commentary to explain the afternoon gains.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Gold prices turned positive Monday, overcoming an early dip after Germany's Bundesbank poured water on the possibility of the European Central Bank embarking on a sovereign debt purchase program.

Gold for December delivery gained $3.60 to settle at $1,623 an ounce at the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The gold price traded in a tight range, running between $1,624.50 and $1,611.80 an ounce, while the spot price was up $5.80, according to Kitco's gold index.

George Gero, precious metals strategist at RBC Wealth Management, said traders attributed the rise in gold to reports that several Chinese firms are preparing to launch gold ETFs to allow more individuals in the country to invest in the yellow metal.

Silver prices for September delivery settled up 59 cents to $28.59, while the U.S. dollar index was dipping 0.07% to $82.48.

The Bundesbank said government bond purchases by the ECB should be viewed critically and entail substantial stability policy risks, according to the bank's monthly report .

The Euro reversed early losses Monday against the greenback to rise to $1.2340, which was up from the prior day's $1.2335.

Gero said the lack of major headlines would likely leave gold prices to trade in a tight range with minor moves up or down for the day.

The Fed releases the minutes of its last policy meeting on Wednesday, but few analysts expect the report to hint at substantial policy changes.

This leaves the annual economic symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyo., expected to take place on Aug. 31-Sept.1, as the next big event for Fed watchers until the central bank's scheduled open market committee policy meeting on Sept. 12-13.

The idea that Ben Bernanke will signal plans to provide further monetary stimulus during his speech in Wyoming isn't universally shared.

"I think we all have this expectation of continued easing monetary policy globally, and whether or not we get any hint of anything new out of Jackson Hole I don't think that should be our expectation," Janet Engels, an analyst at RBC Wealth Management, said recently.

Engels does believe though that Jackson Hole will be critical for the markets overall because it will be a chance for central bankers to talk about monetary policy. In addition to Bernanke, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi is expected to speak as well.

Gold mining stocks were mixed Monday. NovaGold Resources (NG) was falling 1.9%, while AngloGold Ashanti (AU - Get Report) was down 0.9%.

Among other mining stocks, Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM - Get Report), Barrick Gold (ABX - Get Report) and Newmont Mining (NEM - Get Report) were rising 1.4%, 1.2% and 1.2%, respectively.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

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