Los Angeles – The gold price reached a new all-time record high last week of $1,447.82 an ounce before finishing the week higher by 0.75 percent at $1,429.30 an ounce on spreading nuclear contamination in Japan and Middle East violence leading to record crude oil prices and increasing signs of inflation. The price of silver reached a new 31 year high of over $38.00 an ounce and finished the week higher by 5.85 percent at $37.30 an ounce while the Gold/Silver ratio fell to 38.32, a new 13 year low, as silver continues to grow more expensive relative to Gold.
“The current price of Gold represents a growing mistrust of all fiat currencies and, more specifically, a demotion of the U.S. dollar from its position as the safest asset,” said Jim Iuorio, managing director of TJM Institutional Services.
While many leaders thought NATO should take the lead in policing Libya’s no-fly zone after the Western coalitions’ departure, Turkey initially objected and because any military action against Libya by NATO forces requires the approval of all 28 NATO members, it was effectively blocked from assuming command. NATO finally assumed the task of enforcing the Libyan no-fly zone after Turkey finally relented and agreed to allow NATO to assume command.
After taking command U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said that as long as Libya continues hostilities against the rebels, the no-fly zone and multinational military campaign in Libya should continue. “First, Libya should stop fighting and end their hostilities,” Ban said. But “as long as they don’t, the no-fly zone and military operation should continue.” The U.S. is anxious to turn the Libyan operation over to NATO completely so as not to be seen as an aggressor on Arab soil.
President Obama is scheduled to address the Libyan mission in a Monday night speech at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C. In Syria, protests left several dead, hundreds injured, and many more arrested last week, in towns like Deraa, Enkhel, Nawa and Jassem. In Yemen, after almost two months of unrest from anti-government protesters, and after government forces opened fire on demonstrators, tens of thousands of Yemeni citizens took to the streets.
Investors are flocking to the safety of hard assets like gold and silver bullion as unrest continues to unfold in the Middle East and North Africa. In Japan, authorities ordered Tokyo Electric Power Co. to improve its radiation monitoring at the stricken Fukushima nuclear power plant after two workers suffered serious radiation burns to their feet.
The injured workers stepped into shallow pools of standing water that contained radiation levels 10,000 times higher than in the water used to cool the reactors. Japan’s government then advised citizens living within 12 to 18 miles of the plant to voluntarily evacuate the area. During the weekend levels of radiation reached over a million times normal levels forcing the workers at the plant to evacuate once again and prolonging the rebuilding process.
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