NEW YORK — The dollar turned in a mixed performance in volatile U.S. trading on Wednesday amid expections of lower interest rates and caution about possible action by central banks to keep the dollar from falling much further.
Gold bullion prices fell slightly in the United States after moving mostly higher abroad. Republic National Bank in New York quoted gold at $348 an ounce, down 50 cents from Tuesday's bid.
Speculation that the Federal Reserve Board would soon reduce its principal loan rate continued to dominate currency dealings around the world.
"All the signposts are pointing in the direction of a discount rate cut," said Larry Kreicher, an assistant vice president at Irving Trust in New York.
Currency dealers bid the dollar down in afternoon trading in the United States when a rumor swept through financial markets that the Fed and its counterparts in Japan and West Germany were about to undertake a coordinated series of rate reductions.