New high for gold amid South African mine production fears

29-01-2008

New high for gold amid South African mine production fears
Gold hit another new high today as concerns over production in South Africa continued.

The price of the precious metal has increased dramatically in recent weeks, prompted by instability in the financial markets and the credit crunch in the US.

Prices nudged above the $930-mark per ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange (Nymex) this morning, breaking the previous record high yesterday.

It comes as mines in South Africa – which supplies the second-most gold in the world – continue their attempts to restart production after nationwide power cuts.

Giving an update on the situation, Anglo American, South Africa's biggest mining company, confirmed that many of its operations were still affected.

"In light of the current power shortages being experienced in South Africa and the consequent emergency measures that have been implemented over the last few days, a number of Anglo American's mining operations have been temporarily impacted," the company said after being informed of continued electricity restrictions.

It added that only coal and iron ore mining were operating close to normal levels, with platinum and base metal mining remaining affected.

"The power supply disruptions experienced to date have already had an impact on a number of key metal markets and the mining industry's strategic importance to South Africa's economic prosperity is well known," Anglo American said.

"Every effort is being made to return to normal throughout Anglo American's operations in South Africa."

The Fed is expected to cut interest rates a further 50 basis points tomorrow, prompting analysts to predict further price inflation.

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