Gold heads for the biggest monthly gain since August

Gold continued its advance heading for a best monthly gain in February since August as the shiny metal took advantage of the unrest in Middle East and rise in oil prices.

Gold opened the month at $1332.45 an ounce while recorded a high of $1418.15 and a low of $1324.84.

Spot gold is traded at $1411.97 an ounce after recording a high of $1416.31 and a low of $1407.85.

The previous session, gold added $7.50 or 0.53% to close at $1409.07, while gold price was setin London at $1402.50 per ounce declining from $1405.00 during the AM fixing.

The escalation in Libya, which has the largest oil reserves in Africa, increased demand on gold as a safe haven asset and inflation hedge.

The Libyan leader seems to be willing to stay in charge and refuse to leave the country while protesters are insisting to force him to resign which increase expectations that the country is heading for a tough civil war.

Also, in Oman there were some clashes between demonstrators and police which resulted in the kill of two demonstrators. With the spread of tensions from one country to another, gold is finding a solid ground that may lift prices to a new record high.

On the other hand, the geopolitical tensions is boosting oil prices to increase the agony of global economies from inflationary pressures which many prompted central banks to raise inflation forecasts for the current year and next.

Crude oil rose to $99.24 a barrel today from the day's opening at $98.65.

Later in the day, euro zone will release annual CPI for January with expectations showing that the rate will rise to 2.4% from 2.2% in the year ending December.

In the FOREX market, the US dollar inched down against a basket of major currencies, as depicted by the dollar index which fell to a low of 77.06 compared with the day's starting level at $77.21.

Among other precious metals, platinum inched down to $1816.00 from the day's opening of $1818.70, palladium slipped to $793.70 from $794.70 and silver ticked down to $33.40 from $33.46, as of 08:25 GMT.