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Gold Advances to Highest Since May on Inflation Concerns

Gold Bulls Strongest in Nine Months as Hoard Builds
Gold traders are the most bullish they've been in nine months. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Gold rose to a three-month high after the dollar’s slump increased the metal’s appeal as an alternative investment, while higher commodity prices sparked inflation concerns. Platinum climbed.

The greenback fell to a six-week low against a basket of major currencies. European leaders meet this week to gauge progress in tackling the region’s fiscal crisis. Commodities are poised to enter a bull market on surging grain prices and optimism that demand will rise in the U.S. and China. The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials rose to the highest since May 3.

“We’re seeing weakness in the dollar, as well as inflationary tendencies because of rising commodity prices,” Adam Klopfenstein, the senior market strategist at Archer Financial Services Inc. in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “There are a lot of reasons for gold to be rising.”

Gold futures for December delivery increased 1.2 percent to settle at $1,642.90 an ounce at 1:46 p.m. on the Comex in New York. Earlier, the price reached $1,643.60, the highest for a most-active contract since May 7.

Platinum futures for October delivery climbed 0.6 percent to $1,507.80 an ounce. Earlier, the price reached $1,511, the highest since May 9.

In four sessions, the metal has jumped 8 percent, the most since October, after violence curbed production in South Africa, the world’s biggest producer.

Lonmin Plc said 33 percent of workers at the Marikana mine in South Africa returned to work today. Police killed 34 workers at the mine on Aug. 16 during an illegal strike.

Silver futures for December delivery gained 2.9 percent to $29.514 an ounce on the Comex. Earlier, the price reached $29.545, the highest since June 7.

Palladium futures for September delivery rose 2.7 percent to $624.20 on the Nymex. Earlier, the metal reached $626.15, the highest since June 20.

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