Italy joined the list of Europe's troubled nations last week when Standard & Poor's slashed its credit rating to negative from stable, rationalizing the downgrade because of an economic growth rate that is slackening. Fitch ratings reduced Greece's long-term date ranking, which now is four levels lower than investment grade.
At 2:07 p.m. on Monday, gold futures increased 0.52 percent, a $7.90 lift to $1,516.80 per troy ounce.
One analyst predicted precious metal prices will continue increasing in the coming months, thanks to the U.S. Federal Reserve.
The central bank's policies will "remain accommodative for at least the next couple of months," Tom Pawlicki, an analyst at MF Global Holdings in Chicago, told Bloomberg. "The inability of the dollar to maintain its safe-haven status is potentially supportive for metals."
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