Gold was also under pressure after minutes from the US Federal Reserve policy meeting in March suggested it was on course to end its extraordinary bond buying stimulus by year-end. “The loose monetary policy around the world is clearly favouring more on equity investments instead of gold,” said Michael Cuggino, portfolio manager of the $15 billion Permanent Portfolio Funds.
Spot gold was down 1.6 percent at $1,559.80 an ounce by 3:29 pm (1929 GMT), its biggest one-day decline since February 20. US Comex gold futures for June delivery settled down $27.90 an ounce at $1,558.80 an ounce. Trading volume was about 20 percent below its 30-day average, preliminary Reuters data showed. Among other precious metals, silver dropped 1 percent to $27.65 an ounce, after it rallied 2.5 percent on Tuesday for its biggest one-day rise since mid-February. Palladium was down 0.8 percent at $718, sharply off an earlier three-month low, and platinum dropped 1.4 percent to $1,525.74 an ounce.