Gold prices rose on Friday as equity markets fell amidst an upsurge in risk aversion.
Spot gold rose 0.6 percent to $1,854.71 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures were up 0.9 percent at $1,857.50.
Asian markets ended deep in the red, European stocks are bracing for the worst week since October and U.S. stock futures fell as investor sentiment was jolted by a surge in speculative trading from retail investors organized over online forums, such as Reddit.
Hedge funds and other large investors that bet against GameStop have lost more than $5bn after a cohort of amateur investors joined forces to inflate the price of shares in the U.S. video game chain, according to data analytics company S3.
Lingering concerns over tight liquidity in China, rising Covid-19 cases and the slow and chaotic nature of Europe's vaccination rollout also rattled investors.
With GDP data from Germany and France coming in above expectations, investors now await U.S. reports on personal income and spending, consumer sentiment and pending home sales for directional cues.