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The most-active gold contract for December's delivery fell $9.80, or 0.75 percent, to settle at $1,301.70 per ounce.

Weaker than expected inflation has become a key concern for the Fed as its rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee tries to "normalise" monetary policy by raising its key federal funds rate back to levels seen before the financial crisis.

"It would be imprudent to keep monetary policy on hold until inflation is back to two percent", Fed Chair Janet Yellen said Tuesday, while speaking to the National Association for Business Economists (NABE) in Cleveland, Ohio.

Equifax dropped 1.1 percent after announcing that chief executive and chairman Richard Smith would step down in the wake of a massive data hack.

The S&P 500 index closed up 0.01% Tuesday after briefly climbing above the 2,500 mark, earlier during the USA trading day. There has been a focus around the response of American football players towards the USA national anthem and more importantly the tensions between North Korea.

Hopes were also raised of lower USA corporation and individual taxes after President Donald Trump hosted a bipartisan round table discussion on tax policy at the White House.

Advertisment Greater China markets bucked declines in most Asian markets to post slight gains on Wednesday as investors digested Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's overnight speech and as North Korea tensions took a backseat.

"Further details of Trump's tax plans and whether this proceeds smoothly will be of interest - it should be a boost to the economy and mean a generally higher bond yield environment". He thinks President Donald Trump wants a "reformer" heading up the central bank.

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Not only is there a "high probability" of a USA rate hike in December, but the so-called dot-plot - which charts expectations of individual Fed members - suggests policymakers still envision three rate hikes next year.

Both policymakers nodded to the three devastating hurricanes that have struck parts of the US south and the Caribbean, noting their effects will likely make it more hard to interpret economic data in coming months.

Dow e-minis were down 10 points, or 0.04 percent, with 22,892 contracts changing hands.

Comex December gold, at the session low of $1,285.30 an ounce, has lost almost 6% of its value since the one-year high of $1,362.40 on September 8. The Standard & Poor's 500 index added 0.18 points to 2,496.84.

-Germany's 10-year yield increased one basis point to 0.406 percent. The euro fell to $1.1788 from $1.1791.

The Japanese yen is down by 0.3% at 112.06 per dollar.

In oil markets, Brent crude traded at around $58.23 a barrel on Wednesday morning, down 0.36 percent, while USA crude was flat at $51.89 a barrel.

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