Gold turned lower and the U.S. dollar rallied after the Federal Reserve announced plans to extend the average maturity of its holdings of U.S. Treasuries, also known as Operation Twist.
Gold futures – per the December 2011 contract – slid from as high as $1,818 to as low as $1,782 following the FOMC announcement, and remained lower by $17.80, or 1.0%, at $1,791.30 per ounce as of 2:59pm ET.
Gold equities relinquished their gains alongside the yellow metal, with the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) unchanged at $65.63 per share.
Silver pared its gains considerably this afternoon, as it retreated from an intra-day high of $40.77 to trade higher by just 0.1% at $40.19 per ounce.
The U.S. Dollar Index, a trade-weighted measure of the greenback versus several of the world’s other leading currencies, climbed from negative territory on the day near 76.80 to as high as 77.33. The euro gave up its modest gains against the dollar as it slid 0.2% to 1.3673 this afternoon.
The broader equity markets headed south as well, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) lower by 98.47 points, or 0.9%, at 11,310.19.