Gold made modest gains Tuesday despite a drop in oil prices, which the yellow metal tends to follow. New York gold futures climbed 0.6 percent while silver and platinum headed south, falling 1.2 percent and 3.7 percent respectively.
January crude-oil declined $1.48, or 3.4 percent, to $42.07 a barrel following a rise of $2.73 on Monday. The average price for unleaded gasoline dropped 1.7 cents for the second consecutive day to $1.698 a gallon, according to AAA.
March silver lost 12 cents to close to $9.85 an ounce.
January platinum fell $30.80 to end at $812.50 an ounce.
Gold for February gained $4.90 to close to $774.20 an ounce.
"A lackluster morning dragged on into the afternoon hours in the commodities complex today, with little more than mixed results showing in various pits," said senior analyst Jon Nadler at Kitco Bullion Dealers.
"Gold market players continue to keep a sharp focus on stocks as the correlation to them has been relatively strong of late. As well, attention continues to be paid to the last couple of weeks of ‘real’ trading in the dollar and in oil," added Nadler.
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. When prices are falling and economic activities are shrinking, gold prices tend to move lower.
In bullion coin news, three proof American Eagle platinum coins sold out Tuesday morning. That makes six gold and platinum coins within four days.