Hang Seng Financial, HONG KONG — Gold hit a record high on Monday as investors hedged against a weak dollar while Asian shares edged higher after upbeat reports from U.S. retailers underpinned confidence the global economy is recovering.

Gold punched a record above $1,126 an ounce, sending platinum to its highest level since September 2008, as the dollar dipped 0.3 percent against a basket of currencies.

Markets are focused on U.S. President Barack Obama‘s visit to China, which began on Sunday, as he is expected to discuss China‘s yuan currency, which the U.S. believes is undervalued, with Chinese leaders.

Gold, which has gained 10 percent in the past 2-½ weeks, was further supported by forecast from the investment fund BlackRock, a manager and adviser to the U.S. Federal Reserve, that gold would rise further and central banks would be net buyers of gold this year.

“The most recent breakout in the gold price in U.S. dollars has caused most gold prices to start trending higher at the same time,” Hang Seng Financial commented.

The Hang Seng Financial analyst added that investors were now looking for gold to rise in other commodities as well as U.S. dollars.

Asian shares picked up after a slow start. The MSCI index of Asia Pacific stocks traded outside Japan and the Thomson Reuters index of regional shares were both up 1 percent.

The Nikkei 225 average in Japan, however, was flat as investors digested third-quarter growth data, which showed Asia‘s biggest economy grew at its fastest pace in more than two years. But Hang Seng Financial expect this to slow as falling wages will hurt consumption.