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Gold Futures Settle Modestly Higher

Gold prices moved higher on Friday as traders sought the safe haven asset amid an escalation in tensions between the U.S. and China and concerns about global growth.

The dollar also firmed up nicely, and its uptick limited gold's gains a bit.

The dollar index rose to 99.87 and was last seen at 99.77, up 0.4% from previous close.

Gold futures for June ended up $13.60, or about 0.8%, at $1,735.50 an ounce, after rising to a high of $1,742.00 an ounce intraday.

On Thursday, gold futures for June ended down $30.20, or 1.7%, at $1,721.90 an ounce.

Gold futures shed about 1.2% in the week.

Silver futures for July gained $0.329, or 1.9%, to $17.693 an ounce, while copper futures for July closed lower by $0.0455, or 1.9%, at $2.3865 per pound.

The Chinese government abandoned setting an economic growth target for the first time amid uncertainties posted by the coronavirus pandemic.

On the political front, China's decision to write a new national security law into Hong Kong's charter has triggered fresh worries on U.S.-China relations.

Republican and Democratic U.S. Senators said on Thursday that they would introduce legislation to impose sanctions on Chinese officials involved in enforcing proposed security laws in Hong Kong.

The legislation would also impose secondary sanctions on banks that do business with entities found to violate the law guaranteeing Hong Kong's autonomy.

The aggressive intent of the Congress with regard to the tone on China is due to China's alleged role in covering up the initial stages of the coronavirus outbreak.

In another development, the U.S. Senate passed legislation that seeks to delist Chinese companies who don't abide by U.S. accounting laws.

China has warned that it will safeguard its sovereignty, security and interests, and threatened countermeasures.

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