From Chris Mullen at GoldSeek.com...
Gold rose to $894.10 by late trade in Asia on Wednesday before falling to $880.90 early in New York and then rallying higher for the rest of the day and ending at a new session high with a gain of 1.3%.
Silver rose to $17.132 and fell to $16.687 before it also rallied back higher for the rest of trade and ended with a gain of 1.7%.
Both silver and the Gold Market then continued to rise another 1% and more in after-hours access trade.
The Gold Price in Euros rose near €572, platinum gained $47 to $1942, and copper gained roughly 6 cents to about $3.88.
Gold and silver equities steadily rose throughout trade and ended with over 4% gains as the major US indices dropped one-third a per cent after Ben Bernanke, the Fed chairman, conceded the possibility of a recession and vigorously defended the recent action taken with Bear Stearns.
In testimony before the Joint Economic Committee Bernanke said the Fed’s actions were necessary to insure the stability of the financial system and that if no action had been taken then the entire system could have collapsed due to counter-party risk.
Thursday will see J.P.Morgan's chairman James Dimon and Bear Stearns CEO Alan Schwartz testifying before the senate banking committee. Fed Chairman Bernanke, Treasury secretary Paulson, US Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Cox, and New York Federal Reserve Bank President Geithner will also be joining them.
Also on Thursday at 13:30 GMT comes the Initial Jobless Claims report for 3/29 expected at 365,000 and at 15:00 is the ISM Services report for March expected at 48.5.
Back in Wednesday's markets, crude oil fell back below $100 per barrel immediately following the announcement that US crude inventories built more than expected, but it soon followed gasoline higher and ended with notable gains after the Energy Dept. reported a sharp jump in gasoline demand.
Oil inventories rose 7.4 million barrels, gasoline inventories fell 4.5 million barrels, distillates fell 1.6 million barrels, and refinery utilization rose 0.2% to 82.4%.
The US Dollar index rose in early trade after a better-than-expected ADP Employment report that showed 8,000 new jobs on private payrolls vs. 45,000 cuts as forecast. It also raised hopes that the government jobs report on Friday will come in better than expectations of a 50,000 drop in payrolls.
But the Dollar then fell off in late trade and ended lower on recession and credit fears as the Euro found strength on higher than expected Euro-zone industrial producer prices.
Treasury bonds ended slightly lower on mixed economic data and the late surge higher in oil and gold prices.
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