By: Mark O’Byrne
Today’s AM fix was USD 1,391.75, EUR 1,054.60 and GBP 891.06 per ounce. Yesterday’s AM fix was USD 1,403.75, EUR 1,065.63 and GBP 899.67 per ounce.
Gold fell $17.90 or 1.27% yesterday, closing at $1,393.90/oz. Silver slid $0.73 or 3.01%, closing at $23.53. Platinum fell $36.72 or 2.4% to $1,492.28/oz, while palladium slipped $20.53 or 2.9% to $696.27/oz.
Gold edged off again, on the prospect of a decrease in quantitative easing and the uncertainty surrounding the U.S. military action in Syria. The nonfarm payrolls number on Friday is critical and there is also a private report due out today that may show U.S. employment has increased. This all points to a clear decision on tapering at the FOMC meeting later this month.
Sales of American Eagle silver coins by the U.S. Mint this year surpassed the total for all of 2012 as store of value buyers buy silver at a record pace due to continuing inflation and systemic risk.
About 33.75 million ounces of the silver coins were sold so far in 2013, compared with 33.74 million in all of 2012 according to data on the mint’s website as reported by Bloomberg.
In January, sales reached an all-time high of 7.498 million, and averaged 3.65 million a month since then as demand heads closer to the annual record of 39.868 million reached in 2011.
Silver prices surged into a bull market last month and have gained 29% from a 34-month low on June 28, sparked by demand for precious metals as an alternative asset.
Holdings in exchange traded funds backed by silver rose to a record 20,082 metric tons on August 30 and are up 5.9% so far in 2012. Bets on higher prices for the precious metal advanced for the three straight weeks, data from U.S. Commodity Futures Trading show.
Imports by China, the world’s biggest consumer after the U.S., rose for three straight months through July.
The U.S. Mint suspended sales of silver coins for more than a week in January because of a lack of inventory. Sales of gold and silver coins may rise to a record this year if demand continues at the current pace, Richard Peterson, acting director of the mint, said in an interview on June 5th.
The premium charged by dealers surged to 25% in April, the highest since 2008, after the gold and silver price crash.
Silver reached a 31-year high of $49.845 an ounce in April 2011 after Lehman Brothers collapsed and as global central banks expanded their balance sheets, boosting the precious metal’s appeal as a hedge against systemic risk, economic collapse and inflation.
Silver remains well below its record inflation adjusted high in 1980, it’s important real record high of over $140/oz.
Since 2003, we have consistently said that silver was likely to surpass its real high in the coming years. The gold silver ratio is likely to trend lower and revert to its long term average and its geological ratio of 15 to 1 as a huge amount of silver has been used in industrial applications in recent years.
Silver above it’s real record high in 1980 seems likely due to increased industrial, investment and, potentially most importantly, store of value demand for what remains a very rare precious metal in a time of universal currency debasement.
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