The price of gold plunged on Friday and Monday, falling to its lowest level in two years and marking the largest drop in 30 years. Many of Nevada's rural communities depend on gold mining. After enjoying years of economic prosperity, they may be in for a fiscal shock. We'll talk to a reporter who covered the gold boom to find out whether these communities are ready for the gold bust.
That sounds like a lot of land--and that's because it is. In fact, it's 12 percent of all privately held land in Nevada; It was sold last week to a Florida-based company that wants to increase mining and geothermal energy plants on its massive land holdings.
The economy might seem mired in recession in Southern Nevada but elsewhere the sick economy is creating a boom - the gold-mining counties have little or no unemployment, construction work for those who want it and the good times are rolling. This counter-cyclical boom is the other side of the bubble that burst in 2008.
Gold is selling at record prices. At more than $1,700 an ounce analysts say prices continue to rise because of fears of a double dip recession after the U.S. credit rating was downgraded by Standard and Poor's. Nevada is the sixth largest gold producer in the world and with the increase in prices the state's economy stands to gain a significant amount of tax revenue. Nevada's gold mining industry could double its net proceeds in revenue as a result. The Nevada Mining Association says no other industry in Nevada has contributed more to education and local governments. But critics still argue that mining should pay more. We discuss the impact of rising gold prices has on the Nevada economy.