Gold is getting dearer:
NEW YORK (AFX) - Gold futures continued their climb to settle at fresh 18-year highs Monday ... In addition, Merrill Lynch also noted that gold's surge is being propelled by a renewed surge in demand. ... "Gold remains bid, as strong fabrication demand bumps against very strong speculative interest," Merrill Lynch said in a note to clients. "Latest Commitment of Traders data show net speculative long positions have nearly tripled in the past four months to stand at 160,876 contracts. [and] ... boosted by weakness in the US dollar, continued strong investor demand and rising inflation fears."Some think OPEC is driving the price up. In fact, the entire GOLD SECTOR is heating up with acquisitions, too. THE SCOTSMAN put it this way:
LET ME BE THE FIRST TO SUGGEST THAT THE SURGE IN GOLD HAS EVERYTHING TO DO WITH HEDGING AGAINST AVIAN FLU. Currencies - especially Asian currencies - and businesses and investors positioned chiefly in Asia are PROBABLY hedging their bets in case Avian Flu SHUTS DOWN Asian businesses for a year. In other words: it's a flight to quality/safety, BUT NOT FROM INFLATION FEARS - FROM PANDEMIC FLU FEARS. If this is true, then I'd expect GOLD to go through the roof when H5N1 is confirmed to have become H2H. Oil will plummet as demand plummets. And there will be a real estate glut too. Brace yourself. Be prepared. Get Tamiflu. Get facemasks. Eat reishi and shittake mushrooms and kimchi. Buy Sambucol. And buy gold.GOLD and other precious- metal prices have hit fresh highs as investors try to protect themselves against inflation and currency declines. ... A "commodity boom" has seen gold rise as far as $508.50 an ounce, its best since 1983, before giving up some gains to trade at $506.66. Platinum prices are near 26-year highs, while silver set an 18-year best.
MORE HERE; excerpt:
The federal authorities are preparing to face a possible avian flu pandemic in the United States by contemplating a worst-case scenario, under which more than 92 million people will become ill in the space of four months, US Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt said.