Metals Stocks: Gold surges toward all-time high, silver continues rise as U.S.-China tensions mount

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Gold and silver rose further Wednesday, getting a boost after China said the U.S. had ordered it to close its Houston consulate, marking a further rise in tensions between the two countries and sparking demand for haven assets.

Gold for August delivery GC00, +0.52% on Comex was up $16, or 0.9%, at $1,859.90 an ounce, while September silver SIU20, +6.13% surged $1.173, or 5.6%, to $22.73 an ounce.

Read:Silver logs highest finish since 2014 and is up more than 80% from 2020’s low

“Gold squashed any doubts that it is a safe haven and only subject to further strength when broader risky assets rally,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda, in a note. “Gold jumped higher after the U.S.-China dispute over the Houston consulate added to concerns that their relationship is beyond repair.”

China’s foreign ministry said it was ordered to shut the consulate, which serves much of the South, in what it called an “unprecedented escalation” by the U.S., threatening retaliation if the decision isn’t reversed. The U.S. State Department said it ordered the closure to protect American intellectual property and private information, according to media reports citing a brief statement.

China also said Tuesday it would take unspecified “necessary measures” after the U.S. government imposed trade sanctions on 11 companies it says are implicated in human rights abuses in China’s Muslim northwestern region of Xinjiang.

Related:U.S. accuses Chinese hackers of stealing COVID-19 research from companies

Gold had already found support on expectations for an additional round of U.S. fiscal stimulus, which is seen contributing to the potential for further U.S. dollar weakness. A weaker dollar can be supportive to commodities priced in the unit, making them cheaper to users of other currencies.

Silver, meanwhile, has surged nearly 18% so far this week, with analysts saying the metal was overdue for a catch-up with gold.

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