Gold prices rose sharply on Thursday, as traders rushed to the safe haven investment after equity markets across the globe tumbled amid mounting worries about global economic growth.
Concerns over growth outlook and rising bond yields knocked the wind out of stocks on Wall Street on Wednesday and the resultant sell-off in Asian markets on Thursday set up a weak start for European stocks. Today, the U.S. market is seeing some wild swings with investors staying wary of building up positions due to growth concerns.
Gold futures for December ended up $34.20, or 2.9%, at $1,227.60 an ounce, the highest settlement since August 1. On Wednesday, gold futures ended up $1.90, or 0.2%, at $1,193.40 an ounce.
Silver futures for December ended up $0.280, at $14.606 an ounce.
Copper futures for December settled at $2.8030 per pound, gaining $0.0225 for the session.
The recent report from the International Monetary Fund that lowered its growth forecast for the global economy, higher U.S. interest rates and concerns about slowing Chinese economy amidst the ongoing U.S.-China trade war, have taken a heavy toll of stocks in the U.S. stock markets and almost all the markets across Asia and Europe.
In U.S. economic news, a report released by the Labor Department today showed a modest increase in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits in the week ended October 6th. The report said initial jobless claims rose to 214,000, an increase of 7,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 207,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to edge down to 206,000.
Another report from the Labor Department showed consumer prices in the U.S. to have edged up slightly in the month of September. The data showed consumer price index inched up by 0.1% last month, after rising by 0.2% in August. Economists had expected prices to increase by another 0.2%.
The report said the annual rate of consumer price growth slowed to 2.3% in September from 2.7% in August, while the annual rate of core consumer price growth was unchanged at 2.2%.
U.S.-China trade tensions are escalating following U.S. President Donald Trump repeating a threat to impose tariffs on $267 billion worth of additional Chinese imports if Beijing retaliates for the recent levies and other measures.