Gold Futures Settle At 13-month High On Safe-haven Buying

Gold futures pared some early gains on Thursday, but still ended the day’s session on a fairly strong note, on safe-haven appeal after Russia launched a full-scale war on Ukraine.

The dollar’s strength limited gold’s gains a bit. The dollar index, which rose to 97.74, gave up some gains subsequently and was hovering around 97.25 a little while ago, still up by a strong gain of about 1.1%.

Gold futures for April ended up by $15.90 or about 0.8% at $1,926.30 an ounce, after climbing to a high of $1,976.50, the best level in about 13 months.

Silver futures for May ended up by $0.112 at $24.710 an ounce, while Copper futures for May settled at $4.4610 per pound, down $0.0275 from the previous close.

Russian President Vladimir Putin declared a war on Ukraine late Wednesday night and launched a full-scale military operation, firing missiles on the cities of Kyiv and Kharkiv.

Ukraine’s foreign minister blamed Russia for beginning a full-scale invasion and told the United Nations “to do everything possible” to end it. Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy introduced martial law in the country.

In economic news, a report from the Labor Department showed initial jobless claims dropped to 232,000 in the week ended February 19th, a decrease of 17,000 from the previous week’s revised level 249,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to dip to 235,000 from the 248,000 originally reported for the previous week.

A report from the Commerce Department showed the U.S. economy grew by slightly more than originally estimated in the fourth quarter of 2021. The report showed the increase in real gross domestic product in the fourth quarter was upwardly revised to 7% from the previously reported 6.9%.

Another report from the Commerce Department showed new home sales tumbled by 4.5% to an annual rate of 801,000 in January after spiking by 12% to an upwardly revised rate of 839,000 in December. Economists had expected new home sales to dip by 0.6% in the month.

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