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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 January 2008, 16:29 GMT
Gold surges to new record highs
Gold bars
The price of gold rose more than 30% last year
The price of gold has soared to an all-time high of $855.10 an ounce driven by the weak dollar, rising oil prices and geopolitical concerns.

Oil prices have also jumped, with US crude gaining $2.42 to $98.40 a barrel and London Brent up $2.64 at $96.49.

Gold, which becomes cheaper for holders of other currencies when the dollar weakens, is seen as a haven in times of uncertainty and oil-led inflation.

Other metals prices have also risen, with platinum also at a record high.

"Certainly the safe-haven bid, weaker dollar and credit market turmoil has been favourable for gold, and oil hitting $97 is not doing it any disservice," said David Thurtell at BNP Paribas.

Economy and politics

Gold prices rose more than 30% last year.

The dollar has been hit by expectations that upcoming US economic data might be so weak that it will lead to further US interest rate cuts.

The Institute for Supply Management said its index of US factory activity fell to its lowest level since April 2003.

Geopolitical concerns has been fuelled in recent days by the assassination of Pakistan opposition leader Benazir Bhutto, violence in oil exporter Nigeria, and political crisis in Kenya.

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