Continuing concerns about European economies sent gold prices up and pushed stock and oil prices down sharply on Friday. The euro currency also dropped sharply.
Debt problems in Greece and other nations have prompted governments to slash spending, which could slow economic growth.
Worried investors sold euros and sought the perceived safety of gold investments. The precious metal rose to a new record high of nearly $1,250 before declining.
Oil prices fell as traders calculated that slower economic growth would cut energy demand.
Those same concerns pushed the major French stock index down more than four percent and slashed Spanish stocks more than six percent.
Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.