WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Gold futures settled higher on Monday as the dollar shed ground ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy meeting.
The Fed, which is scheduled to announce its rate decision on Wednesday, is widely expected to hold rates unchanged but traders will pay close attention to the accompanying statement and the central bank's projections for clues about the outlook for rates.
While CME Group's FedWatch Tool is currently indicating a 99% chance the Fed will leave rates unchanged this week, the outlook for the November meeting is somewhat more mixed.
The FedWatch Tool is indicating a 69% chance rates will remain unchanged in November but a 30.7% chance of another quarter point rate hike.
The dollar index dropped to 105.02 in the New York session.
Gold futures for December ended higher by $7.20 or about 0.4% at 1,953.40 an ounce.
Silver futures for December ended up $0.112 at $23.498 an ounce, while Copper futures for december settled at $3.7790 per pound, down $0.0220 from the previous close.
On the U.S. economic front, the National Association of Home Builders released a report showing homebuilder confidence in the U.S. has unexpectedly deteriorated in the month of September.
The report said the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index slumped to 45 in September after tumbling to 50 in August. Economists had expected the index to come in unchanged.
The housing market index dropped below the key breakeven measure of 50 for the first time in five months, as persistently high mortgage rates above 7% continue to erode builder confidence.
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