Investors buy more gold as dollar resumes decline

AP News
Posted: Nov 13, 2009 4:49 PM

Investors resumed buying gold Friday as the dollar turned lower.

Other metals also rose. Oil prices, however, extended their slide, dropping to their lowest level in a month on growing concerns over anemic energy demand.

Gold more than recovered its losses from the previous day, when it broke an eight-day streak of gains due to a slightly stronger dollar. The December futures contract gained $10.10 to settle at $1,116.70 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. For the week, prices rose 2 percent.

Gold prices have been on a record-breaking climb over the past two months as investors look for an alternative investment to the dollar, which has fallen to its lowest levels in more than a year. The Federal Reserve has kept its benchmark interest rate at a record low of near zero, driving investors to buy stocks, commodities and bonds _ assets with the potential to yield higher returns than cash.

Gold is also seen as a good hedge against inflation, which can be triggered by a falling dollar, making it one of the biggest beneficiaries of the dollar's decline.

Among other metals, December silver gained 11.5 cents to $17.38 an ounce, while December platinum jumped $25.50 to $1,385.50 an ounce.

December copper futures rose 2.65 cents to $2.9995 a pound.

Elsewhere on the Nymex, oil prices lost 59 cents to settle at $76.35 a barrel. Prices dipped as low as $75.57 earlier in the day, the cheapest since Oct. 15.

Oil prices have been driven higher this year by the weak dollar and the belief that energy demand should pick up as the economy improves. Prices doubled from March to October. But data continue to suggest that demand is very weak, and will likely remain so well into next year.

Heating oil fell 2.49 cents to settle at $1.9661 a gallon. Gasoline for December delivery lost 2.43 cents to settle at $1.9162 a gallon.

On the Chicago Board of Trade, March wheat futures rose 7.5 cents to $5.5975 a bushel, while corn for December delivery was unchanged at $3.905 a bushel.

January soybeans fell 3 cents to $9.87 a bushel.

December coffee rose 0.45 cent to $1.311 a pound. Cotton and sugar prices also rose.