Precious metals gain on tensions in the East China Sea

Singapore  (Nov 30)    Silver and gold logged their biggest gain in two weeks as tensions rise between China and Japan .

China launched two fighter planes Friday to investigate flights by U.S. and Japanese reconnaissance and military planes in its new maritime air defense zone over the East China Sea , state media said. Neighboring countries and the U.S. have said they won't honor the zone.

Despite slumping this year, gold is still regarded as a haven for investors.

Gold has slumped 26 percent this year and is on course for its first annual decline in 13 years, as the allure of the metal has faded amid signs that the U.S. economy is set to maintain its recovery.

On Friday, gold for February delivery rose $12.50 , or 1 percent, to $1,250.40 an ounce.

Other metals also advanced.

Silver for March delivery rose 35.10 cents , or 1.8 percent, to $20.03 an ounce. Copper for the same month rose 1.5 cents , or 0.5 percent, to $3.21 a pound. Platinum for January gained $16.10 , or 1.2 percent, to $1,368.80 an ounce. March palladium rose $3.70 , or 0.5 percent, to $719.65 an ounce.