LONDON (Reuters) – Gold prices hit all-time highs on Friday and silver rallied to its strongest since early 1980, buoyed by expectations U.S. monetary policy will stay loose, dollar weakness, high oil prices and global political risk.
Platinum and palladium prices were also well supported by interest in precious metals as an asset class and by expectations that demand for the autocatalyst metals will improve this year.
Gold held above $1,470 an ounce in midmorning trade on Friday, while silver was near $42 an ounce, platinum was just above $1,785 an ounce and palladium was near $765 an ounce.
Below are recent price forecasts for gold, silver, platinum and palladium.
Please note that dates given are those of the reports in which the forecasts appeared, which may differ from the dates on which they were made.
GOLDMAN SACHS (APRIL 15)
* Goldman Sachs said it sees gold prices at $1,480 on a three-month basis, rising to $1,565 on a six-month view and $1,690 over 12 months.
* “The gold rally continues to receive strong support from low U.S. real interest rates, with 10-year U.S. TIPS yields remaining generally below 1.00 percent over the past month,” the bank said in a note.
BNP PARIBAS (APRIL 13)
* BNP Paribas said it sees gold prices at an average $1,500 an ounce in 2011, rising to $1,600 next year.
* The bank is forecasting silver at an average $41.40 an ounce this year, easing to $37.80 in 2012. The bank said it assumes the silver price will correct next year as a rise in U.S. interest rates curbs gold’s price rise.
* BNP forecast platinum prices at an average $1,880 an ounce and palladium at an average $860 this year, rising to $2,050 an ounce and $990 an ounce respectively in 2012.
UBS (APRIL 11)
* UBS lifted its one-month gold price forecast to $1,500 an ounce from $1,450 an ounce previously, citing uncertainty over the U.S. quantitative easing policy, dollar weakness, elevated oil prices and inflation concerns.
* The bank left its three-month forecast unchanged at $1,400 an ounce. “The end of the Fed’s quantitative easing policy, should it happen as scheduled by end-June, will be a challenge for gold, but not an insurmountable one,” it said.
* UBS said it continues to believe silver prices will reach $50 an ounce, based “nearly exclusively” on speculative activity.