Gold futures jumped to a six-week high as declines in equity markets revived demand for the metal as a haven. Silver surged more than 5 percent. More than $100 billion was wiped from the value of world equity markets yesterday, and global shares are falling again today. Gold extended gains as the dollar headed for the biggest drop in a month against a basket of 10 currencies.
Since Nov. 7, the metal has climbed 9 percent from a four-year low. Signs that central banks in Europe and Asia will increase money supply reignited gold’s appeal as a store of value. Swings in oil prices are increasing bullion’s volatility as traders judge the outlook for inflation.
“There are equity market concerns and an increase in the flight away from risky assets to quality,” James Steel, an analyst at HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. in New York, said in a telephone interview. “Gold seems to be benefiting from that more than anything else.”