Gold futures ended lower on Tuesday for the sixth time in seven sessions, and they also marked their weakest settlement in two weeks.
Gold for April delivery fell $14.10, or 1.1%, to close at $1,231 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The settlement was the lowest since March 1 when gold ended at $1,230.80 an ounce.
"It’s position squaring ahead of the Fed because there’s a little bit of uncertainty here," Reuters quoted Eli Tesfaye, senior market strategist for brokerage RJO Futures in Chicago. "It’s a little bit concerning that the dollar is soft, equities are soft and gold is soft as well, so the market’s probably putting too much weight on the (Fed) meeting."
The policy-setting FOMC kicked off a two-day meeting on Tuesday and will release its statement at 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday.
Gold prices ranged from a low of $1,226 to a high of $1,238.70. In the prior session, they declined $14.30 or 1.1%. Just a few days ago, on Thursday, the yellow metal scored a 13-month high at $1,272.80 an ounce.
Also on Tuesday, silver for May delivery dropped 26 cents, or 1.7%, to end at $15.261 an ounce. Silver prices traded between $15.20 and $15.42. They shed 8.4 cents, or 0.5%, on Monday.
In other precious metals futures:
April platinum declined $5.60, or 0.6%, to $959.80 an ounce, ranging from $951.40 to $965.20.
- Palladium for June delivery fell $2.10, or 0.4%, to $570.70 an ounce, trading between $559.15 and $572.50.
London Precious Metals Prices
In comparing earlier fixed London gold and silver prices from Monday PM to Tuesday PM:
- Gold declined $10.75, or 0.9%, to $1,232 an ounce.
- Silver declined 28 cents, or 1.8%, to $15.32 an ounce.
LBMA platinum and palladium prices are available on the LBMA’s website with a delay of midnight.
US Mint Bullion Sales in 2016
United States Mint bullion products logged gains of 3,000 ounces in gold coins and 258,500 ounces in American Silver Eagles.
This week, the U.S. Mint rationed sales of Silver Eagles to 1 million. Distributors ordered 96.8% of them through Tuesday, leaving 32,500 left until more become available next week. Their cumulative total for the year reached 12,967,500 coins, or 29.9% higher than through the same time in record year 2015.
Below is a sales breakdown of United States Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold during varying periods of time.
|US Mint Bullion Sales (# of coins)|
|Tuesday Sales||Last Week||This Week||Jan Sales||Feb Sales||Mar Sales||2016 Sales|
|$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coins||1,000||11,500||4,000||89,000||67,500||16,500||173,000|
|$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coins||0||1,000||0||23,000||6,000||1,000||30,000|
|$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coins||0||4,000||0||36,000||12,000||4,000||52,000|
|$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coins||10,000||10,000||10,000||145,000||100,000||30,000||275,000|
|$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coins||1,000||2,000||1,000||34,000||19,000||3,000||56,000|
|$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coins||258,500||1,000,000||967,500||5,954,500||4,782,000||2,231,000||12,967,500|
|2016 Shawnee 5 Oz Silver Coins||0||0||0||N/A||105,000||0||105,000|