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Gold rises for fifth day on global economic worries

Gold will continue to shine amid a weak dollar, says author and gold pro Jim Rickards.
Simon Dawson | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Gold will continue to shine amid a weak dollar, says author and gold pro Jim Rickards.

Gold prices rose for a fifth straight session, as weak China data and ongoing uncertainty following Britain's vote to leave the European Union triggered a fresh wave of demand for the safe-haven metal.

Risk aversion swept though markets after the Bank of England's warning on the economic risks of "Brexit," as well as news of a decline in U.S. factory orders and reports of mixed manufacturing and service sector activity in Asia and Europe.

Spot gold was up 0.33 percent at $1,354.47 an ounce. U.S. gold futures for August delivery settled up about 1.5 percent at $1,358.70 an ounce, and last traded up 1.38 percent at $1,357.50. U.S. markets were closed on Monday for the July Fourth Independence Day holiday.

"Safe haven demand has continued to grow ... A lot of people believe that global monetary easing worldwide is going to continue," said Phillip Streible, senior commodities broker at R.J. O'Brien in Chicago.

"I think the gold market is a good place to go right now, especially with record low interest rates."

European shares fell 1.5 percent as nervous investors cashed in gains after a four-day winning streak ended on Monday, despite hopes of increased central bank stimulus to offset a likely downturn triggered by Brexit.

"The market is extremely nervous," said Afshin Nabavi, head of trading at MKS. "That's why gold and silver are benefiting."

The strength in the dollar and some profit taking kept some pressure on prices. The U.S. dollar rose 0.59 percent against a currency basket.

The Japanese yen, also considered a safe haven in times of volatility, rose almost 1 percent against the euro and dollar while sterling hit its lowest since the aftermath of the Brexit vote.

Some analysts, however, said the impact of Brexit would not be a game changer for the world economy.

"The UK recovery will probably falter due to heightened uncertainty about the country's future relations with the EU27, but a more competitive exchange rate along with additional policy support will cushion the blow," Capital Economics analysts wrote in a research note.

Spot silver was 2.17 percent lower at $19.87 an ounce, having jumped above $21 an ounce for the first time in two years in the previous session.

It posted its biggest weekly gain in nearly three years following the Brexit referendum, hitting its most expensive relative to gold since September 2014.

"In our opinion, there is now considerable correction potential from this side. If the 'hot air' were to dissipate, the silver price could come under more significant pressure." Commerzbank said in a note.

Platinum futures was up 1.9 percent at $1,077.10 an ounce, while palladium futures, which had fallen more than 4 percent earlier, were down 0.35 percent at $603.50.

Correction: A previous version of this story said gold traded near a two-year high.