Robert Lenzner
Forbes
February 21, 2011

The violent stand-off in Libya and elsewhere in the Middle East has triggered renewed speculation in precious metals and crude oil prices.

The price of gold jumped $17.60 an ounce today to $1406 an ounce– much nearer its previous peak over $1420. Silver, as well, jumped over $2.00 an ounce to $33.91, precisely the scenario to make silver traders ecstatic. Meanwhile, crude oil, the commodity most directly affected by the intense political unrest, ran up over 5% in price in London to $107.60 a barrel. The last time oil sold at this level was in 2008, just on the eve of an approaching bubble at the $148 a barrel level.

No doubt the pressure on oil prices was impacted by an oil workers strike in the Libyan oil fields, the cessation in exploration by BP, one of the major oil field operators there.

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