(Updates prices, adds fresh comments and details)
* Stocks suffer as Fed heightens recession fears
* Silver rises to highest since Nov. 2
* GRAPHIC-2018 asset returns: http://tmsnrt.rs/2jvdmXl
By Arijit Bose
BENGALURU, Dec 20 (Reuters) - Gold jumped more than apercent on Thursday, boosted by a crumbling dollar and assliding stocks prompted an influx of safe-haven bids after theU.S. Federal Reserve's monetary policy stance augmented concernsabout slowing global growth.
Spot gold XAU= climbed 1.1 percent to $1,256.60 per ounceby 10:44 a.m. EST (1544 GMT), having reached $1,262.01 earlierin the session, a peak since July 9. U.S. gold futures GCcv1 rose 0.3 percent to $1,260.90 perounce. "With the Fed being more hawkish (than expected), you wouldthink the economy is doing really well but that's not the case,"said Phil Streible, senior commodities strategist at RJO Futuresin Chicago. "Equity markets are selling off, oil futures arecontinuing to decline as well and this is prompting investors'flight to safety.
"There are also a number of other factors and it seems likegold has a pretty good wind behind the sails for it to movehigher."
The metal regained momentum after a brief dip on Wednesday,immediately following the Fed announcement to raise interestrates for the fourth time this year, with the central bank alsosignalling "some further gradual" hikes.
"When it brushes off negative news like it did yesterday, itgenerally indicates the market should continue to head higher,"Streible said.
Bolstering appeal for gold was a slide in the greenback,which hit a one-month trough earlier in the session as anot-so-dovish rate hike indication by the Fed increased marketconjecture that the country's economy may be running out ofsteam. USD/
Concerns about global growth also seeped into the stockmarkets following the announcement, as worries of recessioninflated, impairing risk sentiment. MKTS/GLOB
"The subsequent sell-off in stocks and drop in bond yieldssoon attracted renewed buying interest and given the troubledeconomic outlook into 2019, we see the upside potentially forgold having been strengthened further by the Fed's decision,"Saxo Bank analyst Ole Hansen said.
Pointing to improved appetite for the metal, holdings of theSPDR Gold TrustGLD , the world's largest gold-backedexchange-traded fund, jumped to their highest level in fourmonths this week. GOL/ETF
Among other precious metals, palladium XPD= held steady at$1,260 per ounce, having hit a record high of $1,283.49 in theprevious session. Boosted by concerns about a sustained deficit,the autocatalyst metal has been surpassing gold in brief spurts.
Silver XAG= rose 1 percent to $14.75 per ounce, havingearlier hit its highest since Nov. 2 at $14.84 an ounce, whileplatinum XPT= rose 0.9 percent to $792.90. (Reporting by Arijit Bose and Swati Verma in Bengaluru; Editingby Arpan Varghese and Bill Trott) ((Arijit.Bose@thomsonreuters.com; Within U.S. +1 651 848 5832,Outside U.S. +91 8067495254; Reuters Messaging:Arijit.Bose.firstname.lastname@example.org))
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