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Platinum Rises to 17-Week High; Palladium, Gold Advances

Platinum futures rose to the highest in almost 17 weeks as output declined at Anglo American Platinum Ltd., the world’s biggest producer. Palladium extended a rally to the highest since September 2011, and gold gained.

Anglo American, based in Johannesburg, reported a loss for 2012 as production of the refined metal dropped 8.8 percent while costs surged. “Supply challenges” will continue this year, the company said. Global output slumped 10 percent in 2012, Johnson Matthey Plc has estimated.

“The fundamentals are very bullish,” James Cordier, the founder of in Tampa, Florida, said in a telephone interview. “Prices will remain high as end-users are rushing to secure supplies.”

Platinum futures for April delivery rose 0.6 percent to settle at $1,698.10 an ounce at 1:10 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Earlier, the price reached $1,709, the highest for a most-active contract since Oct. 9. The metal has gained 10 percent this year.

Platinum and related metals may have “price spikes” this year and next because of higher consumption and a lack of investment in mines, JPMorgan Chase & Co. said on Jan. 31. Autocatalysts account for 33 percent of global demand, while industrial applications make up 28 percent, according to Johnson Matthey.

Palladium futures for March delivery rose 0.2 percent to $757.80 on the Nymex. Earlier, the price reached $761.90, the highest since Sept. 9, 2011.

Gold futures for April delivery gained 0.3 percent to $1,676.40 an ounce on the Comex in New York.

Silver futures for March delivery slid 0.8 percent to $31.716 an ounce on the Comex. As of Feb. 1, inventory climbed 6 percent this year to 157.1 million ounces, the highest since 1997, exchange data show.

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