Platinum Price Hits Record High

South African power crisis is cause

he price of platinum struck an historic high nearing $1,900 on Feb. 20 on supply disruptions caused by power shortages in South Africa, the white metal's biggest producer, traders said.

The price has been firm since November because of concern over deliveries from South Africa, where production has been affected by accidents, a miners' strike and now power shortages.

"With state energy provider Eskom forecasting the (power) problems to continue for several weeks, further gains seem inevitable with the metal potentially testing $2,000 an ounce in the not too distant future," said James Moore, an analyst at thebulliondesk.com.

Platinum is used to make catalytic converters in vehicles.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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