The gold and silver rush is on!

chart_ws_commodity_metals_gold.top.pngClick on chart to track gold and other commodities By Aaron Smith, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Gold soared to a record high Friday, breaching the key $1,300-an-ounce level, and silver traded at a 30-year high, amid persistent worries about the recovery.

After reaching a peak of $1,301.30 an ounce, gold for December deliver -- the most active contract -- eased to $1,298.10 an ounce, up $1.80 over the prior day's close.

Gold also broke the intraday record of $1,298 that was hit on Wednesday. Early Friday, the yellow metal jumped as high as $1,301.60 an ounce.

Analysts don't see the gold rush ending anytime soon.

All the conditions are there to keep driving gold higher, said Gary Mead, commodities analyst for VM Group in London. A weak dollar, "stubbornly high" unemployment, massive U.S. government debt and "a perception that the federal government is willing to turn a blind eye to" its debt are among the biggest drivers.

"I see the possibility of this carrying on," he said, declining to forecast how high he thinks the precious metal might go.

But he did say a cap for prices would be directly linked to inflation and the possibility of some strong economic data somewhere on the horizon.

"I don't see it rocketing to astronomic highs unless the dollar collapses further," he said. "A lot of this could change very much if we have some good economic figures from the U.S., like manufacturing."

Gold isn't the only precious metal getting attention this week. Silver prices have been on a tear, trading at a 30-year high. Silver prices settled up 18 cents to $21.39 an ounce.

That's still a far cry from its all-time closing high of $48.70 an ounce, reached on Jan. 17, 1980. Silver hit a spot high cash price of $50.35 the following day, said Michael Shore of CME Group.

Investors look to gold and other low-risk investments as safe bets during heightened uncertainty.

Gold hit its true peak on Jan. 21, 1980, when it rose to $825.50 an ounce. Adjusted for inflation in 1980 dollars, that translates to an all-time record of $2,184.08 an ounce, in 2010 dollars. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed3.92%3.97%
15 yr fixed3.00%3.08%
5/1 ARM3.48%3.44%
30 yr refi3.99%4.02%
15 yr refi3.10%3.16%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 18,240.14 107.44 0.59%
Nasdaq 4,995.68 32.15 0.65%
S&P 500 2,112.13 7.63 0.36%
Treasuries 2.03 0.03 1.40%
Data as of 10:18am ET
Company Price Change % Change
Apple Inc 130.09 1.63 1.27%
Bank of America Corp... 15.81 0.00 0.00%
Boston Scientific Co... 16.91 0.01 0.06%
Cisco Systems Inc 29.92 0.41 1.39%
General Electric Co 25.87 -0.12 -0.46%
Data as of 10:04am ET

Sections

After ending deal with American Express, Costco will have co-branded Visa issued by Citi and will start accepting Visa cards on April 1. More

The specter of deflation has settled over vast tracks of the global economy, forcing large and small countries alike to examine the cost of falling prices. More

Michael Jordan is among the newest names on Forbes' annual list of the world's richest people. The basketball star made his fortune through endorsement deals and his ownership of the Charlotte Hornets NBA team. More