By Evelyn Chang
Shares of gold miners fell in Wednesday morning trade as gold dropped more than 1 percent to below its 50-day moving average, ahead of Fed Chair Janet Yellen's highly anticipated Friday speech.
"The decline in gold today in my mind was mostly technical," Kitco Senior Analyst Jim Wyckoff said.
"Also, the outside markets are in a bearish posture," he said, noting that crude oil prices were lower and the U.S. dollar index was higher.
Gold futures traded below their 50-day moving average of $1,333.70 an ounce for the first time since June 24. The last time gold closed below its 50-day moving average was June 7.
The VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) fell more than 4 percent in midday trade to below its 50-day moving average of $29.09. The ETF closed just below that level on Tuesday for the first time since May 31. With Wednesday's declines, GDX was on pace for its first four-day losing streak since early November.
Shares of the world's largest gold producer, Barrick Gold (ABX), fell more than 6.2 percent in midday trade. Newmont Mining was about 4.2 percent lower, tracking for its worst day since July 20.