June 30, 2016 / 10:00 AM / 3 years ago

PRECIOUS-Gold set for best month since February after Brexit shock

* World stocks rise for third straight session
    * Silver prices head for best quarter in four years
    * GRAPHIC-2016 asset returns: reut.rs/1WAiOSC
    * GRAPHIC-Gold/silver ratio: link.reuters.com/kuq35s

 (Updates prices; adds comment, second byline, NEW YORK
dateline)
    By Marcy Nicholson and Jan Harvey
    NEW YORK/LONDON, June 30 (Reuters) - Gold steadied on
Thursday as the other markets showed signs of stabilizing, but
remained on track for its biggest monthly rise since February in
the wake of last week's vote in Britain to quit the European
Union.
    Shares, bonds and currencies plunged on Friday after the
British referendum sent investors scurrying for the perceived
safety of gold, which leapt to its highest in nearly two years
at $1,358.20 an ounce. 
    But the immediate market flurry over the vote settled on
Thursday, with world stock markets rising for a third day and
bond yields hovering around record lows. 
    Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said the central bank
would probably need to pump more stimulus into Britain's economy
over the summer. 
    Spot gold was up 0.2 percent at $1,320.90 an ounce at
3:31 p.m. EDT (1931 GMT), while U.S. gold futures for
August delivery settled down 0.5 percent at $1,320.60. 
    "For the market, there's more to digest and that means
you're not really seeing more long accumulation or
capitulation," said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategist
for U.S. Bank Wealth Management in Seattle.
    "We're all waiting for political news out of the U.K."
    Profit taking and a lack of physical demand is keeping gold
hemmed in, said Afshin Nabavi, head of trading at MKS.
    Holdings of the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded
fund, New York-listed SPDR Gold Shares, have increased by
131 tonnes this quarter, a second consecutive quarterly inflow
for the first time since late 2012.   
    Gold remains up 8.7 percent this month, and is on track for
a second straight quarterly gain and a rise of 24.4 percent for
the first half of the year.
    Silver is heading for its best quarter in nearly four years,
up about 22 percent.
    Silver was 2.7 percent higher at $18.76 an ounce,
having hit $18.80, the highest since September 2014. 
    The gold-silver ratio, which measures the number of silver
ounces needed to buy an ounce of gold, fell to its lowest in 13
months at 70.4.
    "Silver is clearly profiting from two different sides at
once just now: from the higher gold price on the one hand and
from firm base metal prices on the other, as silver is used for
the most part in industry," Commerzbank said in a note.
    Platinum was up 2.3 percent at $1,025.60 an ounce,
after rising to $1,026.10, the highest since May 20. Palladium
 was up 1.7 percent at $595.47, after reaching $598.26,
the highest since May 13.

    
 (Additional reporting By Nallur Sethuraman and Vijaykumar
Vedala in Bengaluru; Editing by Mark Potter and Chizu Nomiyama)
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