Bengaluru: Gold jumped more than 3 percent to its highest in five weeks on Wednesday as Republican Donald Trump held slight leads in some battleground states in the race for the White House against Democrat Hillary Clinton, sending investors to safe havens.
Trump held small leads in the vital states of Florida, Virginia, North Carolina and Ohio, with voting completed in more than two-thirds of the 50 U.S. states.
Spot gold rose as far as $1,316.10, its strongest since Oct. 3, and was trading up 2.9 percent at $1,312.04 by 0321 GMT.
If Trump wins "there`s more uncertainty in his platform and the direction that his policy may aim, so there may be more volatility with risk assets and over the short-term you may have investors flock to gold," said Mark Watkins, regional investment manager with The Private Client Group of U.S. Bank.
The U.S. dollar sank and stock markets retreated in wild Asian trade. Much of the action was in currencies where the Mexican peso has become a touchstone for sentiment on the election as Trump`s trade policies are seen as damaging to its export-heavy economy.
U.S. gold for December delivery was last up 3.1 percent at $1,313.70 an ounce, after earlier hitting $1,317.
Vishnu Varathan, senior economist at Mizuho Bank, said the reaction in the gold market to the outcome of the U.S. vote may be more limited compared to its surge when Britain decided to leave the European Union in June.
Spot gold jumped as much as 8 percent on the British decision to a two-year high of $1,358.20.
"In this case whether it`s a Clinton win or a Trump win, at this point beyond just unravelling some of the very tail-risk events, there`s really nothing left in the tank to aggressively trade gold," said Varathan.
Spot silver rose as far as $18.77 an ounce and was last up 1.5 percent at $18.62.