Platinum eased slightly off a three-month high on Friday morning but traders and analysts said concerns over supply from top producer Russia might keep prices firm in the near term. Platinum prices hit $480.00/485.00 a troy ounce early in London, their highest since September, after strong rallies in New York and Asia on market talk that Russia could delay export quotas for the platinum group metals. By 1250 GMT platinum was indicated at $475.00/480.00, up from $468.00/473.00 at Thursday's close in New York. Dealers said they doubted Friday's platinum price was a ``truly good representative'' of the state of the market as volumes were very small. Russia produces some 20 percent of the world's supply of platinum and some 65 percent of palladium and for the past four years has seen its shipments encumbered by bureaucratic hurdles, the Russia Journal reported.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea