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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Gold prices surged to a new all-time high Tuesday

As investors sought a safe harbor from a falling dollar and inflation. Gold for December delivery rose to as high as $1,045 an ounce, surpassing a previous intraday high of $1,033.90 logged in March 2008, just days after Bear Stearns Cos. collapsed.

- Gold also had a record high closing price, finishing the day at $1,039.70 an ounce, up $21.90, or 2.2 percent. Some analysts see gold rising to $1,100 in the coming days.

- Gold's advance was stoked by a tumbling dollar, which hit a 14-month low against the Australian currency after Australia became the first major country to raise interest rates since the onset of the financial crisis. The move signals that Australia believes its economy is strengthening enough to withstand a slight increase in borrowing costs, and made the Australian currency a higher-yielding and thus more attractive investment to fund managers versus the U.S. dollar.

- The Federal Reserve has said it plans to keep U.S. interest rates at a record low of near zero for some time as one of several tools it's using to shore up the U.S. economy.

- Adding to the dollar's woes, was a report in a British newspaper that Arab states, along with China, Russia, Japan and France, were in talks to move away from using the dollar for oil trading. Several countries denied that such talks were occurring; however there has been much discussion recently about the dollar's role as the world's reserve currency eventually fading.

- Most analysts say the dollar has further to fall, which should support higher commodity prices for the foreseeable future.

- Though it was the highest close for gold on record, the price is still a long way off from an inflation-adjusted peak of about $2,200 set in January 1980, when prices hit $850 an ounce, according to the World Gold Council, an industry trade group.

- Other metals rallied along with gold on Tuesday. December silver spiked 76 cents, or 4.6 percent, to $17.2950 an ounce — its highest close in nearly a month. October platinum rose $23.50 to $1,318.10 an ounce.

- Newcrest Mining Ltd., Australia’s biggest gold-mining company, paced producers’ gains, rising as much as 7.5 percent to A$35.40 on the Australian stock exchange. Lihir Gold Ltd. added as much as 6.1 percent to A$3.15. Shares in the top U.S. gold producer, Newmont Mining Corp surged as much as 8 percent yesterday

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