Gold prices holding near 2-week highs

Gold prices were holding close to their highest level in two weeks on Wednesday, as heightened tensions over Ukraine underpinned safe haven demand for the precious metal.

On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold for June delivery was last up 0.08% to $1,310.20. On Tuesday, gold rose to highs of $1,314.70, the strongest since March 26, on the back of a weaker dollar and growing concerns over Ukraine.

Heightened geopolitical risk continued to underpin gold prices as Ukraine's government fought pro-Russian demonstrations in the east of the country. For its part, Russia has warned that use of force against the separatists could drag the country into civil war.

Gold, seen as a safe haven investment, usually benefits from economic and geopolitical turmoil.

Signs of increased physical demand from top buyer China also supported gold prices. The Shanghai Gold Exchange saw spot gold prices rise by $1 an ounce for the first time since early March on Wednesday.

The US Dollar Index remained close to three-week lows ahead of the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s March meeting due out later in the trading day, after last week’s U.S. payrolls report came in slightly below expectations.

Fed Chair Janet Yellen said recently that slack in labor markets showed accommodative policies will still be needed for some time.

Elsewhere, in metals trading, silver for May delivery was down 0.66% to $19.925 a troy ounce, while copper for May delivery fell 0.43% to trade at $3.038 a pound.