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Gold Futures Settle Slightly Higher

Gold futures settled slightly higher on Wednesday despite very nearly slipping into the red around mid-morning.

The dollar's recovery ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy announcement limited the precious metal's gains.

The dollar index, which dropped to 92.78 in the European session, rose to 93.19 before noon, and was at 93.06, up slightly from the previous close, just ahead of Fed's policy announcement.

The dollar index then edged down to 93.01, netting a small loss.

Gold futures for December ended up $4.30 or about 0.2% at $1,970.50 an ounce after hitting a high of $1,983.80 an ounce earlier in the session.

Gold prices edged further higher in electronic trading after the Federal Reserve said it will likely keep interest rates near zero through 2023.

Silver futures for December ended higher by $0.012 at $27.476 an ounce, while Copper futures for December settled at $3.0610 per pound, down $0.0020 from the previous close.

Retail sales in the U.S. continued to increase in the month of August, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Wednesday. The pace of growth, however, fell well short of economist estimates.

The report said retail sales rose by 0.6% in August after climbing by a downwardly revised 0.9% in July. Economists had expected retail sales to surge up by 1% compared to the 1.2% jump originally reported for the previous month.

A report released by the National Association of Home Builders showed homebuilder confidence jumped to a record high in September. The report said the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index shot up to 83 in September from 78 in August.

Meanwhile, a report released by the Commerce Department showed business inventories in the U.S. inched up by 0.1% in July after slumping by 1.1% in June.

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