The gold price continued to hold above $1,600 per ounce in Asian and early London trade on Tuesday, easing back from Monday's three-week high as world stock markets struggled again amid fresh uncertainty and rumor over Euro-member Cyprus' banking crisis.
Silver below $29 per ounce held flat alongside other commodities, while major-government bond prices rose.
Ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's two-day policy meeting, 10-year Treasury yields edged down to 1.94% per year.
Consumer price inflation was reported at 2.0% on Friday.
"[The Eurozone's] long-running problems...are not going to be resolved quickly," said New Zealand's finance minister Bill English in an interview this morning. "I think over the next five to seven years, you're going to see these occasional outbreaks of [Eurozone] anxiety in quite unexpected ways."
Following Monday's jump in the gold price, "Whether this will be enough to push prices sustainably higher remains to be seen," notes the latest Precious Metals Update from German refining group Heraeus. "In the past, such measures fuelled investors' uncertainty and gave a boost to bullion demand."
Monday saw turnover in U.S. gold futures contracts jump 28% from the previous week's average, but the outstanding number of open contracts was barely changed by session's end.
The giant SPDR Gold Shares — briefly the world's biggest exchange-traded trust fund when dollar gold prices peaked in late-summer 2011 — saw yet another outflow from its holdings, down for the 32nd time this year to a 20-month low beneath 1,220 tonnes.
By value the SPDR Gold ETF slipped beneath $63 billion for the first time since July 2011.
Silver ETF holdings, in contrast, rose to a new all-time record at 19,738 tonnes according to Bloomberg data.
Silver prices again touched $29 per ounce in Asian and early London trade today, before slipping back unchanged from last week's finish.
"We now see the gold market building a solid base at [$1,600 per ounce]," says a London bullion-bank trader in a private note, with "the fundamentals for gold as a 'safe-haven' coming back in force."
"For as long as there is a lack of clarity," agrees today's note from Commerzbank, "and especially if the situation should escalate, gold should continue to remain in high demand as a safe haven."