Gold futures climbed for the second straight day as weaker US consumer confidence increased concerns about a slowing economy, boosting the demand for the metal as a haven. Silver rose the highest in four weeks.
Gold dropped about 29% the last two years, posting consecutive annual losses or the first time since 1998. The faster expansion in the US prompted several investors to lose faith in the metal as a store of value on speculations that the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates.
The Wall Street Journal reported that the most actively traded contract, April delivery, climbed 0.5% or $6.40 settling at $1,227.10 per troy ounce on the Comex Division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The price has dropped 0.6% this week, the third straight decline.
Greek official and eurozone representatives are expected to work through the weekend to create a deal for addressing the debt problems of the country. There are investors who have sought the perceived safety of gold to guard against any risks, which include a drop in value of the euro should an accord fail to pass.
Ira Epstein, a broker with the Linn Group, Chicago said, “The gold market is reacting right now to what is going to happen with Greece.”
According to Bloomberg, silver futures for March delivery rose 3% to $17.294 per ounce, the largest climb for a most-active contract since January 16.
The spot gold-silver ration this week dropped 4% to 70.88, heading for the largest drop since mid-Aug 2013. On the comex, silver had gained 11% this year, while gold gained 3.6%.
March delivery palladium futures rose 2.7% to $794.45 per ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the largest gain since January 20.
April delivery platinum futures climbed 0.6% to $1,207.50 per ounce.
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