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Gold-Oil Ratio Rises to Highest Since March on Economy

Gold traded at the highest price relative to crude oil in more than four months amid global economic concerns.

An ounce of bullion bought as much as 13.58 barrels of oil today, the highest since March 18. U.S. retail sales in July were the weakest in six months, while Chinese industrial output unexpectedly slowed, separate reports showed today. Gold futures rose in New York.

The precious metal has jumped 9.3 percent this year as escalating violence in the Middle East and Ukraine coupled with signs of slowing economic growth boosted the appeal of haven assets. West Texas Intermediate slid 0.8 percent. The U.S. is pumping the most oil in 27 years as muted expansion in China signals less fuel demand.

“It’s clear that people are comfortable with the global oil-supply situation, despite all the violence in the oil-rich regions, and probably demand will not surge as there are growth concerns,” Tom Power, a senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “Gold, on the other hand, is advancing because of the global turmoil.”

Gold futures for December delivery rose 0.3 percent to settle at $1,314.50 an ounce at 1:36 p.m. on the Comex. On Aug. 8, the price reached $1,324.30, the highest for a most-active contract since July 18.

Trading was 25 percent below the 100-day average for this time, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

WTI futures for September delivery rose 0.2 percent to $97.59 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Earlier, the price dropped as much as 0.6 percent to $96.75.

Silver futures for September delivery dropped 0.3 percent to close at $19.845 an ounce on the Comex.

On the Nymex, palladium futures for September delivery rose 0.4 percent to $881.60 an ounce. The price climbed for the sixth straight session, the longest rally since July 8.

Platinum futures for October delivery fell 0.2 percent to $1,469.90 an ounce.

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