Gold holding biggest gains in a month

London - A day after prices jumped by the most in a month, there was little movement in the gold market before the Federal Reserve’s interest-rate decision.

Prices fluctuated after Wednesday’s 1.3% gain, the biggest advance since August 20, which was spurred by speculation the central bank will hold off on the first increase in rates in nine years.

Gold for immediate delivery slipped 0.1% to $1 118.37 an ounce as of 12:01. Volume on the Comex was 32% below the 100-day average for the time of day.

“The market is either betting on a dovish no hike or a dovish hike,” Ole Hansen, an analyst at Saxo Bank A/S in Copenhagen, said by e-mail. “Both of these outcomes would be neutral to bullish for gold.”

There’s been no direction in the gold market recently as investors tried to guess when the Fed might raise interest rates. Prices in London have alternated between gains and losses for most of September and volume on the Comex was below average this week.

Fed-fund futures show a 32% chance of a 25 basis- point increase on Thursday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Higher rates tend to limit gold’s appeal as the metal doesn’t pay interest. Gold has fallen 5.6% this year.

Silver slid 0.4% to $14.8575 an ounce. Prices jumped 3.4% at the close on Wednesday, the most since May 13. Platinum fell 0.9% to $965.19 an ounce and palladium lost 0.5% to $608.75 an ounce.

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