(Kitco News) – Gold prices are moderately higher in afternoon U.S. trading Thursday, as prices rallied in the wake of the FOMC [Federal Open Market Committee] holding steady on its monetary policy and not raising U.S. interest rates. The U.S. dollar index extended its earlier losses on the FOMC news, which also helped the precious metals market bulls.
As of this writing traders were awaiting Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s press conference, which could yield further clues on the timing of a U.S. rate hike. December Comex gold was last up $11.20 at $1,129.90 an ounce. December Comex silver was last up $0.31 at $15.195 an ounce.
After weeks and even months of speculation about this meeting, the Federal Open Market Committee meeting that began Wednesday morning ended Thursday afternoon saw the Fed leave its monetary policy unchanged.
While there was no consensus among traders and investors on whether the Fed would or wouldn’t make an interest rate hike for the first time in several years at this week’s meeting, there seemed to be a growing sense the Fed would make a rate hike at this meeting. Rising U.S. Treasury bond and note yields (falling prices) this week did suggest the Fed would raise interest rates on Thursday.
The market place was relatively calm, overall, after the FOMC statement. I can be argued that nobody was completely surprised by this afternoon’s FOMC results, just because there was no clear consensus on its outcome.
Asian stock markets were mixed Thursday. China’s Shanghai stock index was down 2.1% on the day. Japan’s Nikkei stock index was up 1.4% Thursday. European and U.S. stock indexes were weaker Thursday morning.
The London P.M. gold fix today was $1,117.50 versus the previous London A.M. fixing of $1,118.15.
Technically, December gold futures prices were nearer the session high this afternoon. Gold bears still have the overall near-term technical advantage. However, the bulls have gained a bit of upside technical momentum late this week.
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