It was a banner day Wednesday for precious metals, oil and U.S. stocks. Gold briefly climbed above $941 and silver topped $13. In the end, the yellow metal retreated from its intraday high but still closed to its best level in nearly two weeks. Platinum advanced as well while crude-oil broke a three-day losing streak on news of increased demand from refiners. U.S. stocks rallied with all three major indexes rising at least 3 percent.
In New York trading futures for bullion:
Silver for September delivery jumped 35.3 cents, or 2.7 percent, to 13.208 an ounce.
Gold for August delivery rose $16.60, or 1.8 percent, to $939.40 an ounce.
- October platinum gained by $22.80, or 2.0 percent, to $1,157.90 an ounce.
Notable precious metal quotes on the day follow:
"We are probably pushing toward a top end of a range" set by gold trading since mid-June, Philip Klapwijk, the executive chairman of GFMS Ltd., was quoted on Bloomberg Wednesday. The market is likely to "focus on how bad the economy is. Most factors over the next two weeks will push gold prices down."
"Market maintained highs for the day due to the weak dollar, crude strength and rebounding economy reflecting some inflationary possibilities," George Gero, a precious-metals trader for RBC Capital Markets, was quoted on MarketWatch.
In inflation news, the cost of living in the U.S. climbed in June at the fastest pace since last summer, the Labor Department said Wednesday in its monthly Consumer Price Index report. And like last summer, surging energy costs were mostly responsible for June’s jump. For more, read the Annual Inflation Falls 1.4% or Consumer prices up 0.7%.
In a separate report Tuesday, the Labor Department said producer price climbed 1.8% in June. A companion-like report to the Consumer Price Index, the PPI measures prices at the factory door and inflation pressures before they reach the consumer.
In London bullion, the benchmark gold price was fixed earlier in the day to $938.00 an ounce, which was $13.25 higher than Tuesday. Silver surged 39 cents to $13.27 an ounce. Platinum was fixed $29.00 higher to $1,158.00.
Gold, considered a hedge during times of high inflation and economic uncertainty, tends to follow oil and move opposite to the U.S. dollar. A rising greenback makes dollar-denominated commodities, like bullion, more expensive for holders of other world currencies.
Oil and gasoline prices
Oil prices soared to break a three-day loosing streak. The rise came following news of the Energy Information Administration weekly report showing a larger than expected decline in crude inventories last week.
New York crude-oil for August delivery jumped $2.02, or 3.4 percent, to close at $61.54 a barrel.
The national average for unleaded gasoline fell 1.3 cents to $2.504 a gallon, according to AAA. The price is 8.9 cents down from last week, 16.5 cents less than a month back, and $1.61 lower than a year ago.
U.S. stocks rallied "after Intel’s forecast for a second-half pickup and the Federal Reserve’s improved outlook reassured wary investors," writes Alexandra Twin of CNNMoney.
The Dow Jones industrial average gained 256.72 points, or 3.07 percent, to 8,616.21. The S&P 500 Index rose 26.84 points, or 2.96 percent, to 932.68. The Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 63.17 points, or 3.51 percent, to 1,862.90.