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Gold, Silver Up Amid Rising Greek Debt Worries


(AP) -- Gold and silver prices rose Tuesday as investors worried about the latest efforts to give more emergency loans to Greece.

Gold for August delivery rose $30.10 to settle at $1,512.70 an ounce after dipping below $1,500 an ounce on Friday. September silver gained $1.705, or 5.1 percent, to settle at $35.41 an ounce. Investors consider precious metals like gold and silver to be stable stores of value and tend to buy them when they anticipate instability in other financial markets.

European leaders are discussing a second round of emergency loans for Greece. Standard & Poor's said it believes a French proposal to have banks roll over their Greek debt holdings would be considered a form of default.

Investors have been concerned for weeks that the broader European economy could be affected if Greece defaults on its loans. That could lead to slower demand for commodities such as oil, copper and agricultural products.

"S&P's statement underscores the danger the authorities face as they attempt to change the terms of prior debt offerings while simultaneously trying not to run afoul of the ratings agencies," MF Global senior commodities analyst Edward Meir wrote in a note to clients.

In other trading, metals used in manufacturing rose after the Commerce Department said factory orders increased 0.8 percent in May as demand increased for airplanes, autos and oil drilling equipment. That compared to a decline of 0.9 percent in April.

Copper for September delivery rose 4.5 cents to settle at $4.3475 a pound. October platinum gained $25.30 to settle at $1,742.10 an ounce and September palladium rose $18.20 to $775.65 an ounce.

Wheat and corn prices climbed after a sharp drop last week triggered more interest from buyers.

Wheat for September delivery gained 23.25 cents, or 3.8 percent, to settle at $6.355 a bushel. December corn added 15.75 cents, or 2.6 percent, to settle at $6.125 a bushel and November soybeans rose 5.5 cents at $13.18 a bushel.

Oil and energy products all rose on the day. Benchmark crude for August delivery gained $1.95 to settle at $96.89 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

In other Nymex contracts, heating oil gained 3.21 cents to settle at $2.9566 per gallon, gasoline rose 0.48 cent to $2.9774 per gallon and natural gas rose 4.1 cents to $4.371 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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