Gold futures for February delivery jumped 2.4 percent to $1,263.90 a ounce at 9:51 a.m. on the Comex in New York, heading for the biggest gain since Oct. 17. Prices touched $1,267.50, the highest since Nov. 20.
Hedge funds and other money managers held a net-long position in gold of 26,774 futures and options in the week ended Dec. 3, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show. Short bets rose 6.2 percent to 79,631, within 0.6 percent of the record reached in July.
Bullion is set for the first annual drop in 13 years. Some investors lost faith in the metal as a store of value amid speculation that the Federal Reserve will scale back its $85 billion in monthly bond buying as the economy improves. Data last week showed U.S. payrolls rose more than forecast in November. Policy makers next meet Dec. 17-18.
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