WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Gold prices rose over 1 percent on Friday to surpass the key $1,350 level for the first time since April last year, as renewed trade tensions, underwhelming Chinese industrial output data and worries of a potential military confrontation in the Middle East dented investors' appetite for risk.
Spot gold rose a little over 1 percent to $1,355.60 per ounce, after hitting its highest level since April 11, 2018 at $1,358.04 earlier in the day. U.S. gold futures were up 1.2 percent a $1,359.25 per ounce.
Geopolitical tensions heightened, with the Trump administration blaming Iran for an attack on two oil tankers at the mouth of the Persian Gulf.
'These unprovoked attacks present a clear threat to international security, a blatant assault on the freedom of navigation, and an unacceptable campaign of escalating tension by Iran,' U.S. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo told reporters.
The U.S. military has released a video showing what it claimed was Iran's Revolutionary Guard removing an unexploded limpet mine from one of the oil tankers targeted near the key waterway.
Elsewhere, signs of weakening support for the Hong Kong's government's controversial extradition bill emerged today, as a top Hong Kong adviser recommend a re-evaluation of the government's fast-track approach to the proposed law.
Growth worries linger as a government report showed China's industrial output growth slowed to a more than 17-year low of 5 percent in May amid an escalating trade war with the United States.
Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX