CHICAGO, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- Gold futures on the COMEX Division of the New York Mercantile Exchange bounced off on Tuesday, amid lingering concerns over last week's debt downgrades in the eurozone. The weaker dollar also helped add to the appeal of gold as an alternative asset.
The most active gold contract for February delivery rallied 24. 8 dollars, or 1.5 percent, to 1,655.6 dollars per ounce.
Gold regained some of its momentum on Tuesday, amid lingering worries that European debt woes will lead to the depreciation of euro and loss of its purchasing power, adding to the appeal of gold as an alternative asset, traders said.
Market analysts noted that gold price continued to benefit from reports of better physical demand for gold from Asian countries as the Chinese Lunar New Year approaches. The recent declines in gold prices have lured Chinese to buy physical gold.
The precious metal was also underpinned by the decline in U.S. dollar, as weaker dollar makes gold more affordable to investors holding other currencies. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major global currencies, moved moderately lower on Tuesday.
Silver for March delivery jumped 61.3 cents, or 2.1 percent, to 30.135 dollars per ounce. Platinum for April delivery jumped 39.9 dollars, or 2.7 percent, to 1,528.7 dollars per ounce.