Darren Kugler
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Darren Kugler in Commodities,

Fear is back! Gold glitters as stocks tank

Investors are afraid. Very afraid. How can you tell? Just look at gold.

Stocks were tumbling for a third straight day Thursday, in large part due to bad news from Caterpillar(CAT). Most of the 30 Dow stocks were lower and just a handful of companies in the S&P 500 were in the black.

But gold prices were up 2%. And the top stock in the S&P 500 Thursday was gold miner Newmont (NEM), gaining more than 6%.

Gold has been glittering since the broader stock market started convulsing in August.

The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) exchange-traded fund, a popular ETF that seeks to mimic the price of the actual metal, is up more than 5% since the end of July while the S&P 500 is down 9%.

What's more, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX), which owns Newmont and other big miners like Goldcorp (GG), Rangold (GOLD)and Barrick (ABX), has also held up well lately, gaining nearly 2% in the past two months.