CHICAGO, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) -- Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange ended at their highest level in nearly seven months Thursday, buoyed by the Federal Reserve's announcement of additional stimulus measures to boost the U.S. economy.
The most active gold contract for December delivery rose 38.4 U. S. dollars, or 2.21 percent, to settle at 1,772.1 dollars per ounce.
The settlement was gold's highest since late February. It was reported that gold changed hands around 1,728 U.S. dollars an ounce moments before the announcement and jumped to 1,756.3 U.S. dollars on the news.
The Federal Reserve officials on Thursday unveiled a plan to buy 40 billion U.S. dollars of mortgage-backed securities each month, starting Friday. The Fed also kept in place Operation Twist, under which it sells short-dated debt and reinvests the proceeds in longer-term securities.
According to the announcement, the Fed also decided to extend its pledge in keeping interest rates exceptionally low from late 2014 to at least through mid-2015.
Gold benefits from the quantitative easing measures as it is viewed as a safe haven for value preservation. The precious metal also benefits from fears of currency depreciation when liquidity is added to markets, according to market analysts.
Silver for December delivery gained 1.486 dollars, or 4.5 percent, to close at 34.778 dollars per ounce.