Palladium tops $3,000/oz as supply fears grow, gold jumps over 1%

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Ingots of 99.98% and 99.97% pure palladium are seen at the Krastsvetmet non-ferrous metals plant in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk, Russia November 22, 2018. REUTERS/Ilya Naymushin

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March 4 (Reuters) - Palladium prices on Friday rose above $3,000 per ounce for the first time since May 2021 as concerns over supply shortages from top producer Russia mounted, and the war in Ukraine bolstered demand for safe-haven gold.

Spot palladium jumped as much as 8.4% to $3,008.74 per ounce in the session and was up 7.6% at $2,985.54 by 02:30 p.m. ET (1930 GMT).

Russia accounts for 40% of global production of the auto-catalyst metal, which was headed for a 25% rise this week, its best performance since late March 2020.

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"There's growing consensus that Russia is not slowing down its military campaign and you're only going to see sanctions become a lot harder, and that's really going to disrupt businesses to get their hands on that supply of palladium," said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA.

"Flight bans, logistical issues and sanctions will keep palladium very bullish because this is happening during the time when demand is starting to pick up significantly."


Spot gold prices jumped 1.6% to $1,965.97 per ounce and were up about 4% for the week so far. U.S. gold futures settled 1.6% higher at $1,966.60.

"The Russia-Ukraine crisis will continue to support the prospect for higher precious metal prices," Saxo Bank analyst Ole Hansen said in a note.

"This not only due to a potential short-term safe-haven bid which will ebb and flow, but more importantly due to what this tension will mean for inflation, growth and central banks' rate hike expectations."

Bullion, considered a safe store of value during such uncertainties, largely ignored a 1% jump in the dollar, an alternative safe haven, and the likelihood of an interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve later this month.

Stocks on Wall Street fell as concerns over the conflict in Ukraine overshadowed strong U.S. jobs growth last month. read more

Spot silver rose 2% to $25.67, and was set for a fifth consecutive weekly gain. Platinum gained 3.4% to $1,117.06.

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Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru Editing by Paul Simao and Amy Caren Daniel

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