) --

Gold prices

were slipping below the $1,100 area as investors awaited Ben Bernanke's testimony.

Gold for April delivery was falling $5.80 to $1,097.40 an ounce at the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Gold has traded as high as $1,108.80 and as low as $1,090.20. The

U.S. dollar index

was slipping 0.23% to $80.73.

Gold prices were in a wait-and-see mode as investors looked to

Ben Bernanke's

two-day testimony to Congress. The Federal Reserve chairman is expected to discuss the economy and monetary policy and it could be a no-win situation for gold.

Signs that the Fed will raise key interest rates sooner than expected will weigh on gold prices as the rate hike would curb inflation expectations. On the flip side, any indication of a weak economic recovery could curb risk appetite for commodities and also hurt prices.

Gold is expected to see more consolidation. Many analysts expect the euro to come under more pressure as the Greek sovereign debt crisis remains unresolved. A slide in the euro will boost the U.S. dollar and weigh on gold prices.

"Given the failure to conquer technical resistance around $1,125-27 ...

gold may need to consolidate further before making a substantial push higher," argues James Moore, analyst at in his daily metals report. "Chart support below $1,100 is pegged at $1,080/$1,062."

Silver prices

were falling 5 cents to $15.83 while copper was adding 1 cent to $3.22.

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Mining stocks, a more leveraged way to

invest in gold

, were mixed.

Barrick Gold


was rising 1.34% to $37.77 while

Newmont Mining

TheStreet Recommends

(NEM) - Get Report

was relatively unchanged at $46.81. Other large-cap miners

Kinross Gold

(KGC) - Get Report




were both over 1% higher at $17.92 and $36.95, respectively.

Shares of

Freeport McMoRan Copper and Gold

(FCX) - Get Report

were rising 0.91% to $74.34, while

Yamana Gold

(AUY) - Get Report

was rising 1.58% to $10.28.

Shares of the popular physically backed ETF

SPDR Gold Shares

(GLD) - Get Report

were down 0.05% to $107.84. The ETF shed almost 1 ton Tuesday as investors took some profits.

>>Slideshow: How to Invest in Gold

>>More stories on gold investing


Written by Alix Steel in New York


Alix joined TV in February 2007. Previously, she held positions in film and theater production, management, and legal administration. Alix has a degree in communications and theater from Northwestern University.