June 22, 2020 / 3:04 AM / 17 days ago

PRECIOUS-Gold hits 1-month peak as rising virus fears boost demand

    * SPDR Gold Trust holdings rose 2% on Friday
    * Specs raise gold bullish positions in week to June 16-CFTC
    * Spot gold may test resistance at 1,767/oz- technicals
    * Silver hits more than one-week high

 (Updates prices)
    By Brijesh Patel
    June 22 (Reuters) - Gold jumped to its highest in more than
a month on Monday as investors sought the safe-haven metal after
surging coronavirus cases intensified concerns over a delay in
global economic recovery.
    Spot gold        was up 0.5% at $1,751.63 per ounce by 0650
GMT after hitting its highest since May 18. U.S. gold futures
       rose 0.7% to $1,764.50.
    "General risk aversion is helping the market, we are seeing
pressure on growth exposed currencies and on share markets.
Overall, there are concerns about increasing infection rates,"
said Michael McCarthy, chief strategist at CMC Markets.
    "The market is concerned about the outlook for growth and
that of course is supportive for gold."
    The World Health Organization reported a record increase in
global coronavirus cases on Sunday.             
    Rising infections in the United States and elsewhere dented
hopes for a quick economic recovery and weighed on investors'
appetite for riskier assets.            
    Meanwhile, two U.S. Federal Reserve officials sounded
increasing pessimism on the swiftness of any economic recovery
from the virus and warned the unemployment rate could rise again
if the disease is not brought under control.             
    Geopolitical tensions also supported the safe-haven asset
amid developments in Hong Kong, as details of a new national
security law for the territory showed Beijing will have
overarching powers over its enforcement.             
            
    Indicative of sentiment, SPDR Gold Trust holdings rose 2% to
1,159.31 tonnes on Friday, while speculators increased their
bullish positions in COMEX gold and silver contracts in the week
to June 16.                  
    Spot gold may test a resistance at $1,767 per ounce, a break
above which could lead to a gain to $1,796, said Reuters
technical analyst Wang Tao.         
    Elsewhere, silver        rose 1.5% to $17.86 per ounce to
its highest in more than a week.
    Palladium        eased 0.1% to $1,908.08, while platinum
       jumped 0.8% to $812.27.        

 (Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna
Chandra Eluri)
  
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