Gold prices edged lower on Wednesday as the dollar gained in strength against most major currencies, ahead of release of the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting held in September.
With a rate hike almost imminent in December and more increases on the cards in the coming year, the dollar moved higher today. The dollar index rose by about 0.4% to 95.19.
Gold futures for December ended down $3.60, or 0.3%, at $1,227.40 an ounce.
On Tuesday, gold futures ended up $0.70, or about 0.06%, at $1,231.00 an ounce.
Silver futures for December settled at $14.663 an ounce, losing $0.038 in the session.
Copper futures for December ended down $0.015, at $2.7780 per pound.
Thanks to upbeat data on industrial production in September and a report showing an unexpected uptick in homebuilder confidence in the month of October, shares rose sharply on Wall Street on Tuesday.
However, due to profit taking amid uncertainty about the outlook for growth, the market has drifted lower today. The slide is due to the data that showed housing starts to have tumbled by 5.3% to an annual rate of 1.201 million in September from the revised August estimate of 1.268 million. Economists had expected housing starts to pull back by about 3.5% to a rate of 1.237 million from the 1.282 million originally reported for the previous month.
The report also showed a continued decrease in building permits, which fell by 0.6% to an annual rate of 1.241 million in September from a revised 1.249 million in August. Building permits, an indicator of future housing demand, had been expected to jump by about 4.1% to a rate of 1.280 million from the 1.229 million originally reported for the previous month.