Gold prices rally to 3-week highs on Ukraine tensions

Gold prices rose to three-week highs on Monday, building on the previous week’s strong gains as escalating tensions in Ukraine and investor jitters following last week’s selloff in equities markets bolstered safe haven demand.

On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold for June delivery was last up 0.83% to $1,329.80, the highest since March 24.

Tensions between Russia and Ukraine mounted on Monday as a deadline set by Ukraine for pro-Russian separatists to leave government buildings they are occupying in eastern Ukraine expired.

The U.S. has indicated that it is prepared to impose more sanctions against Moscow if Russian encroachments in eastern Ukraine continue.

Palladium rose to the highest level since August 2011 on Monday, as the risk of disruptions to exports from top producer Russia exacerbated supply concerns, amid an ongoing mine strike in South Africa.

Palladium futures for June delivery were last up 0.64% to $813.90 an ounce.

Investors also remained risk adverse amid fears that last week’s selloff on Wall Street would carry through to this week.

Elsewhere, in metals trading, silver for May delivery was up 0.49% to $20.045 a troy ounce, while copper for May delivery was up 0.42% to $3.054 a pound.