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PRECIOUS-Gold up 1.4 pct as Republicans back U.S. strike on Syria
September 3, 2013 / 11:11 AM / 4 years ago

PRECIOUS-Gold up 1.4 pct as Republicans back U.S. strike on Syria

* Markets watch U.S. decision on Syrian action
    * Unannounced U.S.-Israel missile test fuels safe-haven bid
    * Strong U.S. manufacturing, construction data limits gains
    * Coming up: US int'l trade, Beige book, auto sales Weds

 (New throughout, updates prices and market activity)
    By Frank Tang and Clara Denina 
    NEW YORK/LONDON, Sept 3 (Reuters) - Gold climbed 1.4 percent
on Tuesday after President Barack Obama won the backing of two
top Republicans in Congress in his call for limited U.S. strikes
on Syria to punish President Bashar al-Assad for suspected use
of chemical weapons against civilians.
    Bullion prices rose to within striking distance to their
3-1/2-year high after John Boehner, Republican speaker of the
U.S. House of Representatives, and House Majority Leader Eric
Cantor both pledged support for military action. 
    "When we see headlines that are supportive for a possible
attack on Syria, you see gold catch a bid and the U.S. equities
pull back their gains," said Michael Matousek, head trader at
U.S. Global Investors which has about $1.2 billion in
mutual-fund assets.
    Investors often move into gold as a safe haven in times of
geopolitical tension. Matousek said prices also got a boost as
investors anticipated traditionally strong physical demand in
September, when Indian jewelers stock inventory ahead of Hindu
festivals that are major gold-buying events.
    Spot gold rose as high as $1,416 an ounce and was
last up 1.4 percent to $1,413.51 an ounce by 3:24 p.m. EDT (1924
GMT). On Wednesday, gold climbed to $1,433.31, its highest since
May 14.
    U.S. Comex gold futures for December delivery settled
up $15.90 at $1,412.00.
    Trading volume was about 20 percent above its 30-day
average, preliminary Reuters data showed, as U.S. traders
returned to work after Monday's Labor Day holiday.
    Early in Tuesday's session, geopolitical tensions drove gold
up after Israel tested a U.S.-backed missile system in the
Mediterranean. Russia detected the launch and made a disclosure
which briefly put world markets on edge as traders looked for
any sign of an attack on Syria. 
    Gold's gains were limited after stronger-than-expected data
on U.S. manufacturing and construction spending hinted the
world's biggest economy was gaining traction, potentially
supporting views the Federal Reserve will soon slow its massive
bond-buying program. 
    Private-investor sentiment toward gold bullion rose in
August to its highest since April, said online precious-metals
market BullionVault.
    BullionVault said its customers, mainly private investors,
added 13,500 ounces to their gold holdings in August, the
strongest growth since December last year.
    Among other precious metals, silver was up 0.7
percent to $24.30 an ounce. Platinum rose 1.2 percent to
$1,532.80 an ounce and palladium gained 0.4 percent to
$715.47 an ounce.
 3:24 PM EDT     LAST/    NET   PCT      LOW    HIGH  CURRENT
                SETTLE   CHNG  CHNG                       VOL
 US Gold DEC   1412.00  15.90   1.1  1373.60 1416.40  197,172
 US Silver DEC  24.429  0.916   3.9   23.110  24.530   66,342
 US Plat OCT   1538.20  11.10   0.7  1512.90 1540.90   11,637
 US Pall DEC    717.95  -5.90  -0.8   714.25  731.75    4,490
 Gold          1413.51  19.22   1.4  1384.98 1416.00         
 Silver         24.300  0.170   0.7   24.020  24.470
 Platinum      1532.80  18.60   1.2  1520.19 1537.00
 Palladium      715.47   2.97   0.4   716.50  723.00
 TOTAL MARKET              VOLUME          30-D ATM VOLATILITY
                CURRENT   30D AVG  250D AVG   CURRENT     CHG
 US Gold        206,317   178,722   185,609     24.03   -0.24
 US Silver       70,245    68,056    58,314     36.78    0.83
 US Platinum     13,019     9,656    12,261     20.35    1.38
 US Palladium     4,594     6,616     5,778                  
 (Editing by Jim Marshall and David Gregorio)

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