Gold futures settled higher for a third straight session on Tuesday. Comments from the Federal Reserve's Jerome Powell at his confirmation hearing for a second four-year term as chairman did little to sway expectations for higher inflation and volatility in financial markets. Powell said the central bank's plans to raise interest rates should not throw a wrench in the economy or damage the job market, essentially painting a picture of a "soft landing" rather than a recession. "As spooked as all the markets have been by the Fed's shift to more-hawkish rhetoric, I think Powell's testimony served as reassurance that the central bank won't move too drastically and will keep the health of the economy as its foremost priority," Brien Lundin, editor of Gold Newsletter, told MarketWatch. February gold rose $19.70, or 1.1%, to settle at $1,818.50 an ounce, with most-active prices settled at their highest since Jan. 5, FactSet data show.