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Gold Prices Rise as Safe-Haven Play

Tickers in this article: NG ABX KGC GOLD GLD
Updated from 1:47 p.m. ET with settlement prices

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Gold prices moved higher Friday as investors continued to turn to the yellow metal as a safe-haven asset.

Gold for December delivery added $4.90 to settle at $1,730.90 an ounce at the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The gold price traded as high as $1,739.40 and as low as $1,726.90 an ounce, while the spot price settled down $1.10, according to Kitco's gold index.

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"You have a couple of things at play: clearly part of it is the safety trade or the fear trade ... where people are looking at precious metals ... as kind of the safe-haven assets, so I think that's the post-election part of the overall environment," said Oliver Pursche, co-portfolio manager at GMG Defensive Beta Fund.

Silver prices for December delivery climbed 36 cents to $32.60 an ounce, while the U.S. dollar index ticked up 0.31% to $81.06.

The euro continued its decline against the U.S. dollar as it dipped to $1.2713 from the prior day's settlement at $1.2747.

Greece was expected to take another parliamentary vote Sunday on its budget, just days after the country narrowly passed a tough austerity package.

President Barack Obama addressed the nation Friday about the so-called fiscal cliff, which has been on the minds of investors for many months but has taken center stage after Tuesday's elections.

The president said he was open to compromise but added that he would not tolerate the burden of closing the nation's deficit on the backs of middle-class families.

House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) also spoke Friday and said that the country needed to avert the fiscal cliff without raising taxes.

Uncertainty as to whether politicians in Congress will be able to reach a meaningful deal to avert the budget crisis continued to make gold an appealing safe haven. Many analysts have suggested that elected officials would push back the date to solve fiscal issues into 2013, when the new Congress has taken over in place of the lame-duck session.

Gold mining stocks were mostly lower on Friday. Shares of NovaGold Resources (NG) charged higher by 3.4%, but shares of Randgold Resources (GOLD) lost 2.3%.

Among volume leaders, Kinross Gold (KGC) tacked on 1.8%, while Barrick Gold (ABX) was off 1.2%

Gold ETF SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) shed 0.10%.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

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