Gold Posts Surprise Rise, Defying China Deal; Palladium Eyes $2,000 By

© Reuters. – Gold bulls seem determined to show their disbelief that the China deal touted by President Donald Trump will do magic. They sent prices higher Friday, as the yellow metal remained a hedge to the 17-month trade war.

Autocatalyst metal palladium, meanwhile, closed lower after overwriting gold’s all-time high on Thursday. But the spot price of palladium came within less than $20 of the $2,000 per ounce level targeted by fund managers before sliding on profit-taking.

for February delivery on New York’s COMEX settled up $8.90, or 0.6%, at $1,481.20 per ounce after the Trump Administration announced a China trade deal with scant details.

, which tracks live trades in bullion, rose $7.82, or 0.5%, to $1,477.15 by 3:00 PM ET (20:00 GMT).

is up 15% on the year, while are showing a 13% gain.

“Gold bulls believe there are more unknowns than knowns with this trade deal and that’s why gold prices haven’t really fallen much in recent days,” said Adam Sarhan, chief executive at 50 Park Investments in Orlando, Fla.

hit record highs for a 16th day in a row on continued worries about the power crisis in South Africa that shut down mines in the No.2 palladium producer. Spot palladium was down $16.43, or 0.9%, at $1,923.73. It earlier hit an all-time high of $1,981.50.

for March delivery on Comex settled down $22.60, or 1.2%, at $1,891.60, after setting record highs at $1,958.30.

are up 60% on the year, while spot palladium has gained 51%, easily making the metal, which serves as a purifying agent for gasoline emissions, the best-performing commodity of 2019.

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