Gold rises after Fed announcement


Gold prices rose on Wednesday after the Fed announcement. Spot gold jumped 1.18 percent to $1,212.50 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures for April delivery rose $1.90 to settle at $1,200.70.

Gold futures hit $1,214.90 earlier, the highest level since March 8 when futures hit $1,218.50.

For the second time in three months, the Federal Reserve increased its benchmark interest rate a quarter point amid rising confidence that the economy is poised for more robust growth.

In December the Fed forecast three rate rises this year.

Immediately prior to the Fed announcement at 1:55 pm ET, spot gold edged up 0.44 percent to $1,203.60 per ounce. U.S. gold futures inched up 0.03 percent at $1,203 per ounce.

Investors were also focusing on Wednesday's Dutch elections, which have been boosting gold's safe-haven appeal.

The Party for Freedom is seen as having little chance of coming to power, but a strong election performance for the group that wants to "de-Islamicise" the Netherlands would fuel worries over a surprise result in French presidential elections in April and May.

Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, rose 0.36 percent to 834.99 tons on Tuesday from Monday. Holdings rose for a second straight session after outflows last week.

Spot silver was up 1.75 percent at $17.14.

Platinum rose 1.37 percent at $945.30, while palladium gained 0.87 at $750.50. On Tuesday, palladium prices hit their lowest since Jan. 31 at $741.75.

—CNBC's Jeff Cox contributed to this report.