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Gold futures rise on safe haven demand

Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose on Monday as geopolitical tensions continued to boost the market's safe haven demand for the precious metal.

The most active gold contract for August delivery jumped 2.5 U.S. dollars, or 0.2 percent, to settle at USD1,282.7 per ounce.

Gold prices held ground at a six-week high as global markets absorbed weekend terrorist attacks in London and investors awaited the outcome of the European Central Bank meeting and U.K. general election later this week.

Prices, based on the most-active contracts, also settled at their best level in about six weeks on Friday, and rose roughly 1 percent for the week, as a reading on U.S. job growth Friday fell short of forecasts for a strong payrolls jump in May.

U.S. economic data released Monday were mixed. A government report showed that the productivity of American companies and their employees was unchanged in the first three months of this year, instead of declining at a 0.6 percent annual rate.

The Institute for Supply Management said its nonmanufacturing index fell 0.6 points to 56.9 percent in May, while the Commerce Department reported that factory orders dipped 0.2 percent in April.

As for other precious metals, silver for July delivery inched up 5.6 cents, or 0.32 percent, to close at USD17.581per ounce. Platinum for July delivery rose 4.2 dollars, or 0.44 percent, to settle at USD957.6 per ounce.

Xinhua / PNA