Though the Fed will begin reducing its economic stimulus, central bank officials signaled that they will continue to keep a key interest rate near zero even after the U.S. unemployment rate falls below 6.5%. Investors and economists had long expected the Fed to start cutting back on stimulus efforts. A flurry of better-than-expected economic reports in recent weeks ignited growing speculation that the tapering could begin this month.
Gold futures for February gained 0.4% to $1,235 per ounce on Wednesday, according to CME Group. Gold traded as high as $1,244 and as low as $1,220. Bullion closed in London at $1,226, according to BullionVault.
Silver futures for March delivery climbed 1.1%, to $20.06 per ounce. Wednesday’s high for silver was $20.11, while the low was $19.80.
Metal funds sank on Wednesday.
- The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) fell 0.9%.
- The iShares Gold Trust (IAU) slid 0.8%.
- The iShares Silver Trust (SLV) dipped 0.3%.
Mining ETFs declined during the day.
- The Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) dropped 1.6%.
- The Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (GDXJ) slipped 0.9%.
- The Global X Silver Miners ETF (SIL) waned 1.3%.
Gold stocks mostly pulled back on Wednesday.
- Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM) moved down 1.4%.
- Barrick Gold (ABX) fell 1.7%.
- Eldorado Gold (EGO) slumped 1.6%.
- Goldcorp (GG) slipped 0.7%.
- Kinross Gold (KGC) tumbled 2.2%.
- Newmont Mining (NEM) rose 0.1%.
- NovaGold Resources (NG) slid 1.3%.
- Yamana Gold (AUY) dipped 0.5%.
Silver mining shares mostly retreated during the day.
- Coeur d’Alene Mines (CDE) sank 1.9%.
- Hecla Mining (HL) fell 2.2%.
- Pan American Silver (PAAS) slipped 0.7%.
- Silver Wheaton (SLW) dropped 1.9%.
- Silver Standard Resources (SSRI) moved down 0.6%.
As of this writing, Christopher Freeburn did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. Adrian Ash of BullionVault contributed to this report.