Gold futures prices hit a record just below $1,050 an ounce Wednesday.
•Precious metal record: Gold futures surged to a new record near $1,050 an ounce as the dollar slumped. The greenback is under pressure because other economies are recovering faster than the US and because of a report that oil-exporting countries held secret talks to replace the dollar with a basket of currencies. Oil producers vehemently denied the report by Robert Fisk, a renowned expert in Middle East affairs.
•Asian markets higher: Major Asian exchanges gained about 1 percent as investors cheered Australia’s unexpected interest-rate hike as a sign of global economic recovery. The Australian dollar hit a 14-month high with further interest rate hikes expected later this year.