Gold, silver extend losses as markets await Fed outcome

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Investing.com - Gold and silver prices were under pressure on Wednesday, as market players prepared for the outcome of the Federal Reserve's policy meeting and news on the fate of its bond buying program.

On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold futures for April delivery fell to a session low of $1,345.70 a troy ounce, the weakest since March 12.

Gold last traded at $1,346.40 an ounce during U.S. morning hours, down 0.93%, or $12.60. Prices lost 1.01%, or $13.90 an ounce, on Tuesday to settle at $1,359.00.

Futures were likely to find support at $1,338.00 a troy ounce, the low from March 11 and resistance at $1,392.60, the high from March 17.

Meanwhile, silver for May delivery slumped 0.7%, or 14.4 cents, to trade at $20.71 a troy ounce. Silver ended Tuesday's session down 1.94%, or 41.3 cents, to settle at $20.86 an ounce.

Silver futures were likely to find support at $20.62 a troy ounce, the low from March 10 and resistance at $21.25, the high from March 18.

Traders turned their attention to the Fed's policy statement later in the session, amid expectations for a further reduction in its monthly bond buying program to $55 billion from the current $65 billion.

The central bank was also expected to change its 6.5% unemployment threshold to keep its fund rate near zero into 2015.

The Fed meeting is to be followed by a press conference with Janet Yellen and the bank is also to publish its forecasts on inflation and economic growth.

Demand for safe haven assets weakened on Tuesday after Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia isn't seeking "a partition of Ukraine", signaling that Russia's moves in Ukraine would be limited.

The comments came during a speech to a joint session of parliament in Moscow, a day after the president recognized the results of Sunday's referendum in Crimea, which saw a majority of voters chose to split from Ukraine.

Uncertainty over the situation in Ukraine has weighed on global sentiment over the past few weeks and boosted demand for the precious metal.

Elsewhere on the Comex, copper futures for May delivery fell 0.76%, or 2.2 cents, to trade at $2.929 a pound, as investors remained concerned over the health of China's property sector.

The industrial metal fell to $2.908 a pound on March 12, the lowest since July 2010, amid indications the Chinese economy could be running out of steam.

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This article appears in: Investing , Forex and Currencies

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