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Economy in Brief

Gold & Gasoline Prices Up
by Tom Moeller January 10, 2006

The rise yesterday in gold prices to $540 per ounce was to a level not attained in twenty five years. It underscored several concerns over the potential for future inflationary price pressure including 1) speculation of an end to Fed tightening with GDP growth strengthening worldwide, 2) the coming change in leadership at the Fed and 3) still high energy prices, up one third to one half from last year.

Gasoline prices rose nine cents last week to a retail average $2.33 per gallon. Yesterday, the strength diminished somewhat as the spot price for regular unleaded gas fell a nickel.

Earlier declines in gasoline prices fostered a sharp rebound in petroleum demand. In December, motor gasoline demand is estimated up 5.7% from a year earlier and in the latest week up up 16.7%.

International Transmission of Inflation Among G-7 Countries: A Data Determined VAR Analysis is available here.

Weekly Prices 01/09/06 01/02/06 Y/Y 2005 2004 2003
US Retail Gasoline Price (per gallon) $2.33 $2.24 29.8% $2.27 $1.85 $1.56
Gold: Handy & Harmon, $ per Troy Oz. $541.5 $530.0 28.9% $444.7 $409.2 $363.13
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