Gold is trading at highest price in more than a year

Gold prices hit $1274.70 an ounce Friday morning, up 1% from their closing yesterday and their highest level since February 2015, confirming what bullion bugs have already begun celebrating: the metal is back in a bull market.

The fresh rally held up even with a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report on nonfarm jobs stronger than expected — 242,000 jobs added in February, while the market was expecting around 200,000.

Gold has officially moved back into bull territory – defined as a 20% move from a low.

Bullion prices have gained almost 22% since the most recent closing low in December, meeting the common definition of a bull market.

Worried investors are to thank, as they have been snapping up the precious metal they see as a haven from the turmoil rocking equity markets.

But there is also a theory that China’s gold demand could jump if Beijing imposes capital controls, to prevent money leaving the country.

Nowhere is the change in sentiment more evident than in the physical gold-backed exchange traded funds industry.

The latest weekly flow data crunched by Bank of America Merrill Lynch show investors flooded $7.9 billion in four weeks into gold funds, the largest inflows in seven years.