PRECIOUS-Gold buoyed by global tensions, U.S. inflation data

Reuters

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    * U.S. July consumer prices rise less than expected 
    * Platinum hits five-month high 
    * Silver on track for biggest weekly gain since July 2016 
 
 (Updates prices; adds comment, NEW YORK dateline, byline) 
    By Marcy Nicholson and Zandi Shabalala 
    NEW YORK/JOHANNESBURG, Aug 11 (Reuters) - Gold prices 
climbed to two-month highs on Friday, rising for the fourth 
straight day as investors sought refuge amid escalating tensions 
between North Korea and the United States, while bullion also 
received support from weak U.S. inflation data. 
    U.S. President Donald Trump issued a new threat to North 
Korea on Friday, saying the U.S. military was "locked and 
loaded" as Pyongyang accused him of driving the Korean Peninsula 
to the brink of nuclear war and world powers expressed alarm. 
 urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N1KX1F6 
    Spot gold  XAU=  was up 0.2 percent at $1,287.91 an ounce by 
2:03 p.m. EDT (1803 GMT), and set for its biggest weekly gain 
since mid-April. It earlier hit $1,291.86, its highest level 
since June 7. 
    U.S. gold futures  GCcv1  settled up 0.3 percent at $1,294. 
    "There is a continuation of flight to the safe havens after 
remarks on Thursday evening from Trump about North Korea," said 
Quantitative Commodity Research consultant Peter Fertig. "It's 
not very likely that these tensions will ease in the near future 
so the outlook seems supportive for gold." 
    Geopolitical risks can boost demand for assets considered 
safe-haven investments, such as gold. 
    "There remains huge uncertainty as to how the current 
geopolitical crisis will play out and this may support gold 
prices over the coming weeks," said Capital Economics in a 
research note. 
    "On the other hand, if Trump's threats prove to be nothing 
more than inflammatory rhetoric - as on previous occasions - we 
would not be surprised to see the gold price retreat as the 
focus of investors returns to Fed tightening." 
    Data on Friday showed U.S. consumer prices rose less than 
expected in July, which was also supportive to gold. 
 urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N1KW1B2 
    "If you look at the gold price after the CPI (inflation) 
data, it tells you that the Fed is not going to be in any rush 
to increase the interest rate this year," said Naeem Aslam, 
chief market analyst at Think Markets. "The level which we are 
looking at now is $1,300."   
    The dollar index  .DXY  dipped to a one-week low after the 
data.  FRX/  
    Silver  XAG=  was up 0.2 percent to $17.10 per ounce after 
hitting $17.24, its highest since June 14, in the previous 
session. It was on course for a weekly rise of 5.3 percent, the 
biggest such gain since July 2016. 
    Platinum  XPT=  climbed 1 percent to $986.20 per ounce after 
touching $991.50, its highest since March 6. It had gained about 
2.8 percent for the week so far.  
    Palladium  XPD=  was flat at $896.50 per ounce and was on 
track to end the week about 2 percent higher. 
 
 (Additional reporting by Eric Onstad in London, and Nithin 
Prasad and Arpan Varghese in Bengaluru; editing by Dale Hudson 
and G Crosse) 
 ((Marcy.Nicholson@thomsonreuters.com, +1-646-223-6043; Reuters 
Messaging Marcy.Nicholson.ThomsonReuters.com@reuters.net)) 
 
Keywords: GLOBAL PRECIOUS/  
     

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