Is a rate hike before years end inevitable? Not necessarily. As the US economy gains momentum, oil prices stay low, and inflation keeps at modest increases it would seem likely. However the upcoming election does play a factor in staying the FED's decision. I would expect a slight rise and fall in Gold prices at this time but nothing drastic and by years end all bets are off I expect gold to hover around $900-$1000 per ounce with a FED interest rate hike.