Gold settled more than 1 percent lower on Wednesday as the dollar rallied after the Federal Reserve dropped a set of guideposts it had been using to help the public anticipate when it would finally start bumping overnight borrowing costs up from zero.
In announcing its view on future rates after a two-day policy meeting, the U.S. central bank said it could keep interest rates low even after the U.S. job market returns to full strength and inflation rises to the central bank's target.
It also proceeded with its well-telegraphed reductions to its massive bond-buying stimulus, announcing it would cut its monthly purchases of U.S. Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities to $55 billion from $65 billion.
U.S. gold futures for April delivery settled 1.3 percent lower at $1,341.30 an ounce, with trading volume about 20 percent above its 30-day average, preliminary Reuters data showed.
Meanwhile, spot gold fell 1.8 percent to $1,330.61 an ounce, its biggest one-day fall since Jan. 30.