Renewed concerns about Europe's banking system push gold prices higher

Renewed concerns over the stability of European banks are sending gold prices higher.

News that one of Portugal's biggest financial firms missed a debt payment hit stock markets in Europe on Thursday, raising worries about the region's banks. Traders shifted money into U.S. Treasurys and gold in search of safe hiding spots.

Gold for August delivery rose $14.90, or 1.1 percent, to settle at $1,339.20 an ounce Thursday. Silver for September jumped 44 cents, or 2.1 percent, to $21.51.

Traders often park money in gold in anticipation of a crisis. In March, gold prices hit a high point for the year on concerns over a territorial dispute between Russia and Ukraine.

In other commodity trading, benchmark crude oil lost $1.11 to $102.29 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.