Gold prices jumped more than 2% on Thursday to their highest in over a year and palladium extended a rally as Russia launched an all-out invasion of Ukraine after President Vladimir Putin authorised what he called a special military operation.
Spot gold climbed 1.8% to $1,941.50 per ounce by 0841 GMT, after hitting the highest since January 2021 at $1,948.77. U.S. gold futures jumped 1.7% to $1,943.20.
Russian missiles rained down on Ukrainian cities. Ukraine reported columns of troops pouring across its borders into the eastern Chernihiv, Kharkiv and Luhansk regions, and landing by sea at the cities of Odessa and Mariupol in the south.
“Gold is a safe-haven asset along with the U.S. dollar, and this is its day. We could inevitably see new all-time highs in gold,” Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at OANDA, said.
Prices could continue rallying towards a resistance at $1,960 an ounce and test $2,000 in the next few sessions, Halley added.
Gold has risen about 8% in February so far as the Russia-Ukraine crisis walloped risk appetite. The metal is headed for its best monthly performance since July 2020.
“The market is very volatile and gold is clearly the primary trade on this dynamic at the moment… as long as sanctions keep getting slapped on Russian institutions and individuals, it is going to be ideal for gold,” IG Markets analyst Kyle Rodda said.