Gold futures were slightly lower Tuesday after finishing the previous session below the closely watched $1,800-an-ounce level for the first time in nearly three weeks.

Gold for August delivery


was down $1.60, or 0.1%, at $1,797.60 an ounce on Comex. September silver

shed 10.3 cents, or 0.4%, to trade at $25.22 an ounce.

Traders are awaiting the conclusion of a two-day meeting of Federal Reserve policy makers that begins Tuesday. Officials are expected to discuss plans to eventually taper of the Fed’s bond-buying program, but economists said details are unlikely to emerge.

Meanwhile, investors are also tracking developments in China, where a regulatory crackdown on U.S.-listed technology firms has sent ripples through equity markets.

Need to Know: How China’s stock-market meltdown puts U.S. investors at risk

While gold bulls “may draw strength from the shaky risk sentiment following crackdowns in China, the precious metal is likely to remain confined within a range until the Fed meeting,” said Lukman Otunuga, senior research analyst at FXTM, in a note.

” A hawkish central bank could deliver a heavy blow to zero-yielding gold. However, a meeting filled with doves may boost the precious metal’s allure, possibly sending prices higher,” he said.

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