Gold Prices Drift Lower After Fed Trims Support

NEW YORK (AP) -

Gold prices headed lower Wednesday, after the Federal Reserve said it will continue to scale back its support for the economy.

Gold for June delivery slipped 40 cents to settle at $1,295.90 an ounce. Silver for July dropped 36 cents to $19.17 an ounce.

The Fed cut its monthly bond purchases by $10 billion to $45 billion, saying the steadily improving economy needs less help.

Gold prices have slumped in recent months, as expectations build that the Fed will raise interest rates next year, weakening the appeal of gold and other precious metals as investments.

Prices for most other metals also drifted lower Wednesday. Copper for July dropped 5 cents to $3.03 a pound.

Platinum for July fell $3.50 to $1,427.90 an ounce. Palladium for June rose $4.60 to $812.50 an ounce.

In other trading, agricultural contracts were mixed. Wheat rose 5 cents to $7.22 a bushel.

Corn fell 3 cents to $5.19 a bushel. Soybeans slipped 5 cents to $15.13 a bushel.