Gold topped $1,500 per ounce for the first time ever on Wednesday, hitting $1,505.21; it was bid at $1,505.16 per ounce in morning trading after a Tuesday New York close of $1,493.90. U.S. gold futures for June rose $10.60 per ounce to hit $1,505.70 as worried investors sought safety from numerous worldwide worries.
Reuters reported that the rise in price in April alone was 5%, and that looked set to keep heading upward on talk of Greek debt restructuring and on some fear that Standard & Poor's might downgrade the AAA credit rating of the U.S. Silver followed gold's track upward, coming in at $44.56 per ounce, a 31-year high, and later was bid at $44.51 against $43.89.
While demand in the U.S. and in Europe is based primarily on the quest for a safe haven in the midst of currency woes and uncertainty, there are other factors driving the price of gold elsewhere. India and China, the world's first and second largest consumers of gold, are facing stronger inflation and customer demand for the precious metal. China is also the world's largest gold producer.