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Gold Prices Rise After Solid Economic Reports

"Gold is a pure commodity. It doesn't offer a dividend, there's no earnings associated with it, and so it is really supply and demand driven," said Paul Pagnato, founder of HighTower's Pagnato-Karp Group. "What we're seeing now is the central banks have their act together; they're all coordinated, they're all in line with one another, and the economies are starting to heal."

Gold, though, has been overshadowed this week by the platinum trade, as the white precious metal reached parity and surpassed gold prices.

Platinum prices were adding $7.20 to $1,701.30 an ounce on Thursday. Platinum has seen a significant move up as demand in the United States and China -- the prime source of demand comes from catalytic converters on cars -- and as supply from South Africa (the world's largest producers) has dwindled.

And if precious metals traders are considering whether to continue to ride the recently volatile gold trade, or the surging platinum exchange, ETF Securities U.S.'s Rhind suggested the better play may be the latter.

"These are not short-term problems; we're talking about their structural problems in South Africa, which is the largest producer. They're not things that can be resolved quickly, and I think these problems are certainly going to be here for some time," said Rhind.

Europe reported no major economic reports on Thursday, but the euro was posting gains to snap its losing streak. The euro was gaining to $1.3357 against the U.S. dollar, which was up from the prior day's close at $1.3289.

Gold mining stocks were mostly lower on Thursday. Shares of Eldorado Gold (EGO) were off 0.77%, and shares of Kinross Gold (KGC - Get Report) were losing 0.75%

Among volume leaders, Barrick Gold (ABX - Get Report) was down 0.08%, as Yamana Gold (AUY) was decreasing 0.28%.

Gold ETF SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) was adding 0.43%, while iShares Gold Trust (IAU) was climbing 0.37%.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

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