Spot gold [XAU= 1758.80 -10.74 (-0.61%) ] has risen 4 percent this month, having touched its highest in seven weeks above $1,800 an ounce this week, still back from the $1,920.30 record reached early in September, but pointing towards $2,000 judging by current options positions.
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Gold has confounded market watchers by refusing to behave like a safe-haven and instead has tracked equities over the past few weeks, but the escalating European debt crisis could see bullion ditch its risk-asset mantle and return to record highs.
The debt problems of some of the smaller euro zone states have mortally wounded the premierships of Greece's George Papandreou and of Italy's Silvio Berlusconi and hounded the euro to one-month lows against the dollar and eight-month lows against the British pound as confidence evaporates over the ability of Europe's leaders to stem the spread of the crisis.
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