Gold futures rose for the second straight day and silver surged as commodities and equities rallied amid optimism that European officials were making progress in taming the region’s sovereign-debt crisis.
The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Index of 24 raw materials gained as much as 2.6 percent, led by gains in copper and silver. The European Central Bank will resume covered-bond purchases and reintroduce yearlong loans for banks, President Jean-Claude Trichet said.
“Gold is back to behaving like a classic commodity,” Frank Lesh, a trader at FuturePath Trading in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “Physical demand is providing support to gold.”
Gold futures for December delivery gained $11.60, or 0.7 percent, to settle at $1,653.20 an ounce at 1:40 p.m. on the Comex in New York. The precious metal is heading for the first weekly gain in five.
Futures reached a record $1,923.70 on Sept. 6 as investors sought alternatives to equities and some currencies. The metal has climbed 16 percent this year. Spot gold is in the 11th year of a bull market, the longest rally since at least 1920.
Silver futures for December delivery climbed $1.653, or 5.4 percent, to $32.005 an ounce, the biggest jump since July 13. The price has advanced 39 percent in the past 12 months.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum futures for January delivery gained $25.20, or 1.7 percent, to $1,508.10 an ounce.
Palladium futures for December delivery climbed $28.45, or 5 percent, to $598.80 an ounce, rising for the second straight day.
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