Just before 1 p.m., gold futures were up 1.65 percent, a $22 increase to $1,354.10 per troy ounce. Silver futures were up 1.66 percent, an increase of 0.471 to $28.76 per troy ounce. March-delivery platinum was up 6.2 percent to $1,831.40 per troy ounce while March-delivery palladium was up $10 to $820.55 per troy ounce.
"As things in Egypt begin to degrade, we'll see a flight- to-quality bid for gold," Frank McGhee, the head dealer at Integrated Brokerage Services in Chicago, told Bloomberg.
Armed loyalists to embattled president Hosni Mubarak engaged protestors who are seeking to oust the autocratic ruler of three decades. Mubarak has agreed not to run for re-election in September but protesters want him to step down immediately.
Investors and analysts are closely watching the situation unfold as the uprising contagion that started last month in Tunisia and toppled its leader moved on to Egypt early last week and prompted the leader of Yemen to agree not to run for re-election. He also agreed not to hand the presidency to his son.
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