Gold prices settled lower Monday as traders look ahead to a Federal Reserve policy meeting this week.
Gold dipped $1.80 to settle at $1,299 an ounce. Silver slipped 10 cents to $19.59 an ounce.
The Fed starts its two-day policy meeting Tuesday. When it’s finished, the Fed is expected to continue scaling back its support for the economy. Gold prices have dropped as the Fed has pulled back on its bond-buying program.
A surprise move from the Fed could jolt the price of gold sharply higher or lower. Trading is likely to remain muted until the Fed wraps up its meeting Wednesday afternoon, said Sterling Smith, a commodities specialist at Citigroup.
Other metals were slightly lower. Platinum sank $4.60 to $1,419.70 an ounce, while palladium lost $10.50 to $800.70 an ounce. Copper was unchanged at $3.09 a pound.
In other trading, agricultural contracts were little changed. Wheat moved up 0.3 of a cent to $7.09 a bushel.
Corn rose a penny to $5.14 a bushel while soybeans gained 6 cents to settle at an even $15 a bushel.
In the market for oil and gas contracts, benchmark U.S. crude for June delivery rose 24 cents to $100.84 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
In other energy trading in New York:
– Wholesale gasoline slipped 4 cents to $3 a gallon.
– Heating oil fell 4 cents to $2.94 a gallon.
– Natural gas rose 14 cents to $4.80 per 1,000 cubic feet.