Gold jumps on dollar weakness, other metals follow

AP News
Posted: Nov 11, 2009 5:38 PM

An early slide in the dollar pushed gold prices to a new record Wednesday and gave other metals a boost.

December gold futures rose as high as $1,119.10 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange Wednesday, before settling up $12.10 at $1,114.60.

Gold rose as the ICE Futures US dollar index, a measure of the dollar against other currencies, retreated to its lowest level since August 2008. The dollar later recovered some of its losses and moved slightly higher, but its rise had little effect on gold prices.

Gold and other commodities have benefited from a steady weakening of the U.S. currency this year. The Federal Reserve's rock-bottom interest rates have encouraged investors to park their money in anything but cash, driving prices for stocks, commodities and bonds higher.

Many analysts say the only threats to a continued rally in gold are higher interest rates or a significantly stronger dollar, both of which are unlikely anytime soon.

Several Federal Reserve officials reaffirmed late Tuesday that the central bank will keep interest rates low for an extended period to support the economic recovery. However some analysts believe gold's rally could be due for a pullback.

"While I don't see the Fed instigating an aggressive rate hike this year, the fact that you haven't had a correction of any kind in the market is worrisome," said Jon Nadler, senior analyst at Kitco Metals Inc.

Other metals continued to follow gold's upward march. December silver jumped 31.5 cents to $17.537 an ounce, while December platinum rose $18.40 to $1,366.40 an ounce. Palladium rose 3 percent.

Among industrial metals, December copper futures rose less than 1 cent to $2.966 a pound.

Energy prices got a boost after OPEC said the world would consume more crude in 2010 than previously forecast.

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The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries revised its previous estimates for global oil demand growth to 750,000 barrels per day, up 50,000 barrels a day from last month's estimate.

Light, sweet crude for December delivery added 23 cents to $79.28 a barrel.

In other Nymex trading, gasoline futures rose 1.53 cents to $1.9927 a gallon, while heating oil futures rose 0.35 cent to $2.0558 a gallon.

On the Chicago Board of Trade, December wheat futures rose 8.75 cents to $5.3175 a bushel, while December corn slipped less than a penny to $3.94 a bushel.

January soybeans added 4 cents to $9.72 a bushel.

Among other soft commodities, December cocoa jumped $63 to $3,152 a ton. January sugar added 0.78 cent to 22.10 cents a pound.