CHICAGO, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange fell sharply on Thursday as a firmer dollar and rising stocks diminished the precious metal's safe haven appeal.
The most active gold contract for February delivery plunged 13 dollars, or 1.03 percent, to close at 1,253.10 dollars per ounce.
U.S. benchmark stock indexes headed higher, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbing 98.62 points, or 0.41 percent, to 24,239.53 points as of 1831 GMT.
The U.S. dollar index, a measure of the dollar against a basket of other major currencies, continued to rise to 93.61 as of 1820 GMT. The greenback has remained on an upturn this week.
When the dollar and equities go up, gold futures usually fall.
Gold faced additional pressure when bitcoin soared above 16,000 dollars on Thursday morning before paring gains, said some analysts.
As for other precious metals, silver for March delivery fell 15.3 cents, or 0.96 percent, to settle at 15.802 dollars per ounce. Platinum for January went down 8.30 dollars, or 0.92 percent, to close at 894.50 dollars per ounce.