Gold hovered near its lowest level in more than four months on Wednesday ahead of the conclusion of a Federal Reserve meeting that may stoke expectations for a mid-year hike in U.S. interest rates. Spot gold was little changed at $1,150.30 an ounce by 0029 GMT, not far above Tuesday’s trough of $1,142.86 – its lowest since Nov. 7.
Many expect the Fed officials, who started a two-day policy meeting on Tuesday, to drop the phrase “patient” from their forward guidance on interest rates, potentially paving the way for a rate hike in June, the first since 2006.
While the U.S. economy has been strengthening as evidenced by a firming labor market, the housing sector remained weak. Data on Tuesday showed U.S. housing starts plunged to their lowest level in a year in February.
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