Markets on Monday responded to news of a surge in COVID-19 cases announced by the World Health Organisation, with gold prices on an upswing, reaching their June peak, Reuters reports.
The spot price for gold was up 0.7 percent to $1,754.74 per ounce by 2:25 a.m. GMT. The precious metal’s value hit its highest point since 18 May.
US gold futures spiked 1.1 percent to reach $1,771.40.
On Friday SPDR Gold Trust holdings rose 2 per cent to 1,159.31 tonnes, as speculators increased their bullish positions in COMEX gold and silver contracts in the week to June 16.
Other precious metals posted a similar upturn, with silver climbing 1.7 percent to $17.91 per ounce, its highest in more than a week.
Palladium gained 0.2 percent in value, reaching $1,914.48, while platinum jumped 1.6 percent to $818.18.
International investors who are keeping a close eye on coronavirus developments were driven to the safe-haven metal after the confirmed spike in coronavirus cases dampened hopes for a more swift global economic recovery from the pandemic.
“General risk aversion is helping the market, we are seeing pressure on growth-exposed currencies and on share markets. Overall, there are concerns about increasing infection rates,” said Michael McCarthy, chief strategist at CMC Markets.
The expert added: “The market is concerned about the outlook for growth and that, of course, is supportive for gold.”
Investors were reportedly steering clear of more risky assets after the World Health Organisation reported a record increase in global coronavirus cases on 21 June, with the total rising by 183,020 in a 24-hour period.
The cumulative global toll of confirmed cases has now reached 8,708,008, the WHO daily situation report said on 22 June.
Nearly half of all cases and deaths — 4.3 million and 219,144, respectively — are concentrated in the Americas, with the US continuing to rank first in terms of cases and fatalities. The country has 2.2 million registered cases of the coronavirus, and a death tally of 119,895.
Two US Federal Reserve officials were cited as voicing pessimism over the possibility of a quick rebound from the economic fallout of the pandemic and warning of a potential surge in the unemployment rate.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) report comes as parts of Europe are gradually reopening after seeing drops in COVID-19 cases and deaths.