Gold futures price rises 7% in 2012, posts longest winning streak in decades

An Austrian worker handles ten kilogram 'raw' gold bars in Austrian gold bullion factory Oegussa in Vienna on Oct. 8, 2008.

Gold futures rose seven percent in 2012 and posted the longest run of annual gains since at least 1920 on expectations that central banks around the world will take action to boost economic activity, MarketWatch and Bloomberg reported today.

On the day, gold for February delivery rose 1.2 percent to end the final trading session of 2012 at $1,675.80 per troy ounce in New York on optimism US lawmakers will strike a deal to prevent the country falling off a “fiscal cliff” at midnight, MarketWatch reported.

Gold proved an attractive investment over the year as investors bet on policymakers in Europe, China and the United States rolling out further stimulus measures.

“All that money printing across the globe put a bid under gold,” Matt Zeman, a strategist at Kingsview Financial in Chicago, told Bloomberg.

“There is overall optimism about the fiscal deal so we are seeing buying across the counter.”

According to Reuters, it was the 12th year in a row that gold has finished higher.

The precious metal started the year at below $1,580 and exceeded $1,800 by October after the US Federal Reserve pumped more money into the economy.