Gold prices in the spot and futures market are likely to be range-bound on Wednesday as investors weigh the US Federal Reserve’s action on the $85-billion-a-month stimulus programme.

But the yellow metal is sure to come under more pressure after US data showed that permits for buildings increased to the highest in over five years last month. Weekly jobless claims in the US and factory output data due later in the day will shed more light on the likely direction of gold.

Gold holdings in SPDR Trust

Investors seem to be keen on cashing out of gold as seen from the holdings in SPDR Gold Trust, where gold holdings continued to rule below 850 tonnes at 848.91 tonnes.

Money managers and hedge funds too are not bullish on gold.

Spot gold, gold futures

By mid-day in Asia, spot gold was quoted at $1,245.24 an ounce and gold futures maturing for delivery in February ruled at $1,244.60.

In the domestic market on Tuesday, gold for jewellery (99.5 per cent purity) increased to Rs 30,740 for 10 gm and pure gold to Rs 30,890.

On MCX and NCDEX, gold futures could trade between Rs 30,000 and Rs 30,500.

Crude oil prices

Rising crude supplies and easing of geo-political crisis are likely to keep crude oil prices under leash.

Brent crude oil for delivery in January ruled at $110.92 a barrel and US crude at $93.37.

The oils and oilseeds market is likely to come under pressure on higher arrivals and reports of China cancelling an order to buy 3 lakh tonnes of soyabean from the US.

With weather clearing up in the North and West, arrival of kharif oilseeds has gathered pace. On the other hand, hopes of conducive weather in South America is raising hopes of a better soyabean crop and expectedly, China has played truant with its shipment orders.

Still, demand for soyameal is likely to cushion prices from a steep fall.

Soyabean, crude palm oil

On the Chicago Board of Trade, soyabean for delivery in January ruled at $13.37 a bushel. Crude palm oil for delivery in February on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange opened lower at 2,621 ringgit or $814 a tonne.

Wheat and corn (industrial maize), on the other hand, are likely to come under pressure on profit-booking. Domestic wheat prices, however, could rule firm on demand from flour mills.

CBOT wheat for delivery in March ruled at $6.59 a bushel and corn contracts for the same month at $4.25 a bushel.