Category: Silver Views

Prepare Now For The Coming Global Financial Calamity

05-Oct (TraderPlanet) — In a September 20, 2015 interview, gold expert Bill Holter argued that the economic system is on the verge of a “financial calamity.”

Discussing the recent Fed decision not to raise interest rates, Holter said, “If we had an increase in interest rates. . .the markets would close within two weeks. . ..I don’t think there’s any way the Fed can tighten.” He sees more quantitative easing (QE) in the future, with QE in China because “they’re imploding.” Worse, after 80 months of 0% interest rates and massive printing of money, there is no recovery, let alone any expansion of global markets. He said, “Trade is slowing,” which means that “global GDP is slowing.”

Holter said, “They know they need to do another QE, but they know if they do that, they’ve lost all credibility.” Talk about raising interest rates, he argued, is an attempt to try to regain some credibility. Even as the mainstream media discusses how it will not be that bad if the Fed raises rates, Holter argues, “All that’s left is a reset. . ..The Fed is now helpless to stop the coming global financial calamity.”

Turning to gold and silver, Holter said, “I think this is the bottom. Can they push the price down again? It’s possible, but. . . . The physical market has hit a hard bottom.”

…Holter said, “If some type of an event happens today, you could wake up tomorrow and all of that gold could be cleaned out.” Owners of gold and silver won’t sell their gold or silver until you can give them a currency they can trust. Holter warned, “We will have a standard of living completely unthought-of of as possible.”

When credit shuts down, he warned, distribution shuts down. “This is not going to just be a financial problem, but a problem getting things you need to live.” Holter said, “These big stores get stocked up every single night. . . . The average store only has food for about two or three days. So, this is not going to just be an issue about you paying your bills. It’s going to break down so badly it is going to be an issue about whether or not you can get food.”

[source]

PG View: Obviously this is something we hope does not happen. However, the prudent investor is prepared!

Don’t think it could happen? Post-financial crisis books by the likes of Ben Bernanke and Tim Geithner reveal just how close we came to the abyss. We may not be so luck the next time.

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Posted in Economy, Gold News, Gold Views, Silver News, Silver Views |

Scarce silver to get even tougher to find in 4th quarter

04-Oct (MINING.com) — The void left by government mints in North America is shaking up the silver market, creating a major opening for competitors to supply the growing ranks of “silver stackers” and capture market share.

Shortages of fabricated silver bullion products continue across the board. Mints and refiners have fallen progressively further behind in recent weeks – caught flat-footed by a spike in demand starting at the end of June.

…The sovereign mints – particularly in the U.S. and Canada – aren’t likely to pull their weight in the 4th quarter. Almost all of the remaining production of 2015 dated silver American Eagles and Maple Leafs has now been sold. That means many buyers may soon find themselves in a queue for delivery of 2016 dated coins sometime after the new year, or paying even bigger premiums for coins from stock.

The problem is the pipeline of new coins, which is already insufficient. It will completely shut off towards year end. The U.S. Mint, whose bureaucratic incompetence historically makes it the most incapable of keeping up during demand spikes, will stop all production sometime in early to December to change over to the 2016 dies. The production halt generally lasts a month, and deliveries of new coins resume in early to mid January. (Switching out coin dies at private mints only takes a few minutes, but for some reason the process takes several weeks at the U.S. Mint.)

[source]

PG View: Several words of caution:

1. Beware of brokers selling Eagles at below market premiums with the promise of delivery in December (or even January). They (and you) are betting on the U.S. Mint fulfilling their production expectations and that is hardly a sure thing with the Mint on allocation since July and the above report that “almost all of the remaining production of 2015 dated silver American Eagles and Maple Leafs has now been sold.” The U.S. Mint sold out of silver Eagles in early-November last year, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that happens even earlier this year. At that point they may just shut down for the remainder of the year to retool for 2016 strikes.

2. Private mint rounds become popular only when sovereign mint coins can’t be had. When the U.S. Mint and RCM get caught up and Eagles and Maples are readily available again, rounds become very illiquid and difficult to sell.

3. Consider gold as a viable alternative to silver at this juncture. Most investors see silver as undervalued relative to gold with the ratio above 70. While that may be true, when premiums are factored in, the ratio is actually in the mid-50s. The value proposition is not nearly as great in “real” terms.

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Rickards: It’s important to allocated part of your portfolio to physical assets

by James G. Rickards
07-Sep (DarienTimes) — Only one person has ever been director of both the National Security Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency. That person is retired Four-Star General Michael Hayden. Recently I had the chance to talk to Mike Hayden on Capitol Hill. We were both there as part of a conclave to discuss the status of Iran-U.S. negotiations on uranium enrichment. We had a chance to talk one-on-one about my specialty, which is financial warfare, and the potential impact on investors.

…For investors, the implications of this new age of financial warfare are profound. Stock and bond markets have always been affected by wars. But the wars were fought elsewhere – stocks and bonds merely adjusted in price to the new state of the world. Today, markets are not bystanders; they are ground zero. It’s fascinating to meet brilliant military and intelligence officials like General Hayden who are rapidly absorbing the fact that wars are now fought in financial markets rather than on physical air, sea and land.

The military and intelligence communities are absorbing the new reality, but most investors are still behind the curve. Traditional stocks and bonds are digital assets that can be hacked, wiped-out or frozen with a few keystrokes. It’s important to allocated part of your portfolio to physical assets that cannot be wiped out in financial warfare. These assets include silver, gold, fine art, land, rare stamps, cash (in banknote form, not bank deposits) and other physical stores of value. For the portion of your portfolio that is in stocks, it is helpful to consider venture capital and start-up companies where your ownership is in the form of a written contract, not a digital account.

My conversation with General Hayden reinforced my already strong view that financial warfare is here and digital assets such as brokerage accounts and 401(k)s are in the line of fire.

[source]

PG View: We here at USAGOLD have always viewed it as an imperative to hold a portion of one’s wealth outside the traditional banking and financial services realm. Rickards’ op-ed drives home the point.

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Gold underpinned by haven bid, silver slides with commodities; Au/Ag ratio surges to nearly 7-year high of 79.14.

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Metals hit multi-year lows on global growth concerns, dollar rises

24-Jul (Reuters) — Metal prices hit multi-year lows on Friday after weaker-than-expected data from China and the euro zone raised concerns about global growth, but the U.S. dollar rose as a Federal Reserve rate hike was still on the table.

London copper fell to its lowest level since 2009 after a survey showed China’s factory sector contracted by the most in 15 months in July due to shrinking orders, fuelling worries over demand in the top metals consumer as stockpiles steadily mount.

The flash Caixin/Markit China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) dropped to 48.2, below economists’ estimate for a reading of 49.7. It was the fifth straight month below 50, the level which separates contraction from expansion.

Euro zone business activity also started the second half on a less secure footing than expected, hit by Greece’s near-bankruptcy woes. Markit’s flash PMI fell to 53.7 this month from June’s four-year high of 54.2. A Reuters poll had predicted a more modest dip to 54.0.

While economies looked weaker in Europe and Asia, better-than-expected U.S. jobless claims kept the Federal Reserve on track for a rate hike in coming months.

The U.S. dollar was 0.3 percent higher against a basket of currencies.

[source]

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U.S. Mint sold out of silver coins due to strong demand

07-Jul (Reuters) – The U.S. Mint said on Tuesday it temporarily sold out of its popular 2015 American Eagle silver bullion coins due to a “significant” increase in demand, the latest sign plunging prices have spurred a resurgence of retail buying.

In a statement sent to its biggest U.S. wholesalers, the Mint said its facility in West Point, New York, continues to produce coins and expects to resume sales in about two weeks.

This is the second time the mint has sold out of silver coins in the past nine months – it ran out of 2014-dated American Eagles in November last year.

In 2013, the historic drop in precious metals prices unleashed a surge in global demand for coins, forcing the mint to ration silver coin sales for 18 months.

[source]

PG View: Further confirmation of the post below. We still have good availability on silver Eagles!

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‘It’s time to hold physical cash,’ says one of Britain’s most senior fund managers

20-Jun (Telegraph) — Ian Spreadbury, who invests more than £4bn of investors’ money across a handful of bond funds for Fidelity, including the flagship Moneybuilder Income fund, is concerned that a “systemic event” could rock markets, possibly similar in magnitude to the financial crisis of 2008, which began in Britain with a run on Northern Rock.

“Systemic risk is in the system and as an investor you have to be aware of that,” he told Telegraph Money.

The best strategy to deal with this, he said, was for investors to spread their money widely into different assets, including gold and silver, as well as cash in savings accounts. But he went further, suggesting it was wise to hold some “physical cash”, an unusual suggestion from a mainstream fund manager.

His concern is that global debt – particularly mortgage debt – has been pumped up to record levels, made possible by exceptionally low interest rates that could soon end, and he is unsure how well banks could cope with the shocks that may await.

He pointed out that a saver was covered only up to £85,000 per bank under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme – which is effectively unfunded – and that the Government has said it will not rescue banks in future, hence his suggestion that some money should be held in physical cash.

He declined to predict the exact trigger but said it was more likely to happen in the next five years rather than 10. The current woes of Greece, which may crash out of the euro, already has many market watchers concerned.

[source]

PG View: Spreadbury adds his voice to a number of high profile investors that have recently been advocating for precious metals ownership.

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The Daily Market Report: Gold Extends to the Upside, Poised for 3rd Consecutive Higher Close


20-Mar (USAGOLD) — Gold heads into the weekend on a solid note, buoyed by renewed weakness in the dollar. The yellow metal appears poised for a third consecutive day of gains, nothing new 2-week highs.

The weekly chart looks particularly good from a technical perspective, showing a failed test of the November low at 1131.15 and a likely key reversal (lower low, higher high, close above the previous week’s high). That’s a pretty bullish setup, but further upside follow-through is needed to lend confidence.

Silver is actually leading the charge on this week’s rally, up more than 2.5% today, to gold’s 1.1% gain thus far. The gold/silver ratio had been hovering around 74 recently, but started to retreat on Wednesday. Today support at 70.23 gave way, putting the ratio at 5-month lows.

The major currencies, with the exception of the yen, are all up significantly against the dollar: EUR +175. CHF +160, GBP +210, AUD +120, NZD +140, CAD +80. Clearly the surprisingly dovish tenor of this week’s Fed policy statement has ignited considerable volatility in the FX market.

While the FOMC removed the word “patient” from the statement, the significant downward revisions to central tendencies suggests the central bank is now far less optimistic about growth and inflation prospects. Significant shifts in the “dots” show that when (if?) the Fed starts raising rates, FOMC members think they will climb at a far slower pace than previous expectations.

HSBC’s David Bloom warns us that “The U.S. economy is surprising to the downside aggressively. Don’t ignore it.” The Fed’s own outlook is suddenly reflecting that reality, and the recent dollar strength has likely been a contributing factor.

While the stock market is up significantly today, equity bulls should take heed of that reality as well. Former Dalls Fed President Richard Fisher chimed in with his own warning today on CNBC:

“Are we vulnerable in my personal opinion to a significant equity market correction? I do believe we are, and the reason for that is people have gotten lazy. They’ve depended totally on the Fed.” — Richard Fisher

“Depended totally on the Fed” to the exclusion of the fundamentals and the reality of the slowing economy. Now may the time to lock in some of your profits in shares and move those funds into the safety of gold and/or silver.

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2014 Silver Eagle Sales Break Annual Record at Over 43 Million!

12-Dec (MarketOracle) — Silver Eagle sales in 2014 have already broken the 2013 annual record with a few weeks of sales still left to be counted. As of December 11, the U.S. Mint reported that 43.1 million silver eagles have been sold so far in 2014. This compares to the 42.7 million during all of 2013, which was the previous all-time record.

Investor demand for silver clearly remains strong and people are taking advantage of discount prices. Why not? It isn’t too often that you can purchase an end product for less than the cost to produce it. Many miners are unprofitable at current silver prices as their all-in cost of production is closer to $20. I believe this is an excellent time to take advantage of the paper games that have pushed prices to such absurd lows. Silver at under $20 per ounce is not likely to last long.

[source]

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US Mint Sells Out Of Silver Eagles Following “Tremendous” Demand

05-Nov (ZeroHedge) — When it comes to buyers of physical assets as opposed to traders of paper representations of such assets, there is one key difference: the latter, more than anything, enjoy looking at “heatmaps”, chasing trends and jumping on momentum, the result being the most recent massive selloff in such “paper” representations of precious metals as the GLD and SLV ETFs, and various gold futures.

On the other hand, those who prefer to hold the metal in their hands, as well as others such as China whose ravenous apetite for gold over the past 4 years has been extensively covered here in the past, take every advantage of selloffs, and – inconceivably – demonstrate how Econ 101, namely supply and demand, really works, leading to ever greater demand the lower the price. Demand so high, in fact, that the underlying commodity that is being sold through paper conduits, sells out.

This is precisely what happened at the U.S. Mint, which just sold out of all silver American Eagle silver bullion coins, following “tremendous” demand in the past several weeks, according to Reuters reports.

This should hardly come as a surprise: over the weekend we reported that “Silver Coin Sales At US Mint Soar To Highest In Two Years.”

[source]

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October Silver Eagle Sales Best Ever…. And With 10 Days Remaining

22-Oct (SRSrocco) — While the Fed and Western Central Banks continue to prop up the entire market, investors took advantage of the manipulated low silver price by purchasing a record amount of Silver Eagles in October. Silver Eagle sales were also extremely strong last month as total sales reached 4.1 million in September.

In the beginning of October as the price of silver was clobbered below $17, investors purchased more silver eagles in one week than in any other week throughout the year. This trend continues as sales in October are the strongest ever compared to previous years.

If we look at the chart below, we can see that investors only bought 550,000 Silver Eagles in October 2007. Then in the next few years, purchases of Silver Eagles increased dramatically to 1,425,000 in Oct 2008 and 2,939,000 in Oct 2009. However, since 2010…. October sales were relatively flat–between 3.0 to 3.1 million.

[source]

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Gold & Silver Hit Multi-Month Highs As ETF Inflows Surge Most In 21 Months

02-Jul (ZeroHedge) — The last 2 days have seen something ‘odd’ happen in gold markets. As the China commodity finance deals are unwound and massive futures positions squeezed, Gold ETFs have seen the biggest inflows since September 2012 (and are their highest in 2 months). Whether this is the start of trend is unclear (as perhaps the conspiracy ‘fact’ proof of manipulation and rigging in the gold markets stalled the hollowing out of the gold complex). Ironic that this considerable rise should occur shortly after rumors of Germany’s end to repatriation calls. Gold (and silver) has broken out once again this morning after the early dump on ADP ‘good’ news is well bid to 3-month highs.

[source]

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Gold Hits $1300, Silver Surges To 3-Month Highs As China Ponzi Unwinds

19-Jun (ZeroHedge) — But, but, but… Janet Yellen didn’t say precious metal valuations were within historical norms? Gold and Silver are surging today (and have done since the FOMC press conference all-clear) with the latter having its best day in months and back at 3-month highs… Intriguingly, just as we warned, gold and silver have been on a significant tear since the Qingdao CCFD probe began (as synthetic hedges are unwound – which dominate pricing in PMs) while copper and iron ore and so on have all fallen (as the reality of no real demand leaks into these commodities).

[source]

PG View: A Chinese trading company is being investigated for securing loans from foreign banks with collateral they did not own and/or pledging the same collateral multiple times. The concern is heightened by the fact that if one trading company was doing it, perhaps many were. Where there’s smoke there’s fire.

What ZeroHedge is suggesting, is that part of unwinding these dubious Chinese Commodity Finance Deals (CCFDs) would likely include buying in short hedges in the paper gold market.

if we are right that somehow China managed to push gold lower via gold CFDs, then the unwind pushes gold higher. — ZeroHedge 09-Jun-14

ZeroHedge notes today, that gold and silver prices have been on the rise since the Qingdao CCFD probe began. Perhaps the great unwind has now begun in earnest…

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Silver imports soar 180% in India

21-Mar (MineWeb) — Though India ceded its position as the world’s largest gold consumer to China in 2013, it is not ready to let go of its top position with regards to silver. Even as gold imports fell substantially last year, those of silver soared to a new high in 2013.

India imported around 5,500 tonnes of silver, 180% more than the previous year, a sectoral analysis of the white metal has shown. As of 2012, India had brought in 1,900.39 tonnes of silver. This was however, a massive drop from the 4,087 tonnes of silver imported in 2011.

In 2009, India imported just 1,284 tonnes of silver, which then shot up to 3,029 tonnes the next year.

[source]

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Could 2014 be the year for gold bugs?

05-Jan (CNBC) — Andrew Su, CEO of Compass Global Markets says he sees a lot of bullish factors ahead for gold this year.

[video]

PG View: Su says “precious metals are a buy for us this year,” making note of the three failed attempts to break below $1180, which is the “average production cost of gold around the world.” He says however they are playing silver, having begun accumulating positions late last year below $20. He thinks silver is heading back to $25.

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Silver Set to Double, According to… Apple?

by Peter Krauth
10-Dec (MoneyMorning) — We all have our reasons for following Apple. I track it because this tech behemoth is a massive global consumer of metals – base, rare earth, and precious.

And right now, Apple is giving us some surprising indications that the demand for silver is much higher than its current price would have us believe.

Actually, the first “sign” came to us back in January when Apple had to delay new 27-inch iMac deliveries by up to four weeks.

Of course, the company never specified exactly what was causing the delay… but the rumors flew.

The most intriguing rumors centered on a possible shortage of industrial silver in China.

Regardless, the Apple “indicator” is just one reason silver could double over the next 12 months.

There are five other compelling clues that indicate silver’s price has temporarily decoupled from what the demand data dictate…

[source]

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Silver coin supplies buckle on fever-pitch retail buys

15-Nov (MarketWatch) — Silver prices have dropped more than 30% year to date and demand for the physical metal has reached a fever pitch: United States Mint sales of the American Eagle Silver Bullion Coins have already hit a record this year.

But as supplies of the coin tighten, analysts and bullion dealers said there are still many options for those interested in buying silver. Many predicted all along that sales of those coins would reach a record this year — and they expect the metal’s popularity to continue to grow.

“Private investor demand for physical silver in 2013 has been staggering,” said Adrian Ash, head of research at BullionVault, an online physical gold-and-silver exchange headquartered in London.

In fact, it’s amazed the industry, he said. “Refiners can’t mint enough product and they’re seeing none of it come back for melt.”

[source]

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American Eagle silver coin sales hit a record: U.S. Mint


12-Nov (MarketWatch) — Sales of the American Eagle one-ounce silver bullion coins hit an annual record on Tuesday, according to the United States Mint.

Authorized purchasers of the coins ordered their full weekly allocation of 500,000 coins, bringing the total sales to date this year to a record 40.175 million ounces, the Mint said.

That sales figure topped the previous annual record of 39.869 million ounces seen in 2011.

“Retail demand for physical silver, in the form of AE coins, remains strong as a result of lower but now stable silver prices,” said Jeffrey Wright, managing director at H.C. Wainwright LLC.

[source]

PG View: See our CLIENT ALERT! from Monday, regarding tightening Silver Eagle supplies and our current availability.

Silver Eagles premiums rose another 26¢ per ounce at the wholesale level overnight, but we still have a limited amount of inventory secured at a lower premium. Once that is sold, we’ll be forced to follow the market. If you’re thinking about making a Silver Eagle purchase before year-end, weigh your price expectations against the realities of tightening supply and rising premiums.

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Year End Availability and 2014 Release Details for US Mint Bullion Programs


06-Nov (Coin Update) — The United States Mint recently provided authorized purchasers with information on year end ordering procedures and the availability of 2014-dated releases for the American Eagle and American Buffalo bullion programs. Based on the details provided, it seems that the American Silver Eagle bullion coins will experience roughly one month of unavailability between the final allocation of 2013-dated coins and the release of the first 2014-dated coins.

…The situation for American Silver Eagle bullion coins differs from the prior year. Authorized purchasers will be offered the last weekly allocation of 2013-dated coins on Monday, December 9, 2013. With demand continuing to run ahead of the available supplies, the allocation will likely be quickly depleted.

The 2014-dated Silver Eagle bullion coins will not be available to order until Monday, January 13, 2014. The initial release will be subject to the US Mint’s allocation program, which rations supplies amongst the authorized purchasers.

Last year, the US Mint had unexpectedly sold out of 2012-dated Silver Eagles on December 17, 2012. Orders were first accepted for the 2013-dated coins on January 7, 2013. The roughly three week void in availability contributed to an opening day sales total of 3,937,000 coins, which seems to have been the highest ever one-day sales for American Silver Eagles. This was followed by another temporary sell out with sales resumed under the allocation program, which has remained in effect throughout the year.

[source]

PG View: We’re already seeing premium pressures on silver eagles amid mounting expectations of supply issues going into year-end. However, we presently have about 5000 coins in inventory. Once that supply is depleted, almost assuredly eagles will come at a higher price relative to spot. Get in touch with your broker today!

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With gold scarce, India’s festival season loses its shine

01-Nov (Reuters) — A scarcity of gold and high prices are pushing Indians to look to silver or diamond jewellery as alternative gifts this festive season, adding to the gloom in the gold trade after government measures to restrict imports.

Indians are the biggest buyers of gold in the world and many believe that buying and giving it on holy days brings good fortune. Friday marks Dhanteras, a huge festival associated with Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, and another festival, Diwali, falls on Sunday.

“So far, we have sold just two gold rings today. It’s a far cry from what it was during Dhanteras last year,” said executive Sanjay Kumar at Chawla Jewellers in New Delhi. Saleswomen in bright traditional sarees sat idle.

…Given high inflation and low real interest rates, many Indians see gold as an investment. If demand is being displaced anywhere this year, it is to silver and diamonds, which hold their value in the same way.

Imports of silver – which costs just 500 rupees per 10 grams – are likely to hit a record this year after reaching 4,073 tonnes from January to August, more than double the 1,921 tonnes in the whole of 2012.

[source]

PG View: Perhaps not surprisingly, silver is holding steady today, while gold has come under additional pressure.

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The Daily Market Report

Gold Surges Back Toward July Highs


12-Aug (USAGOLD) — Gold surged in Asian trading and again early in the New York session, pressuring the 1348.50 peak from mid-July. The initial round of gains came on the heels of Japan’s Q2 preliminary GDP miss, and despite a rebound in the dollar.

Japan’s initial Q2 GDP print was just +2.6%, well below expectations of +3.6%. Q1 GDP was revised lower from +4.1% to 3.8%. This is suggestive that Abenomics is not working as well as previously thought and it heightens concerns that Abe/Kuroda will dial up the stimulus further, or at a minimum forestall next year’s planned sales tax hike that was supposed to start chipping away at Japan’s massive ¥1 quadrillion plus debt load.

Reports that the Chinese government has been covertly providing stimulus for key cities and provinces is also being linked to firmer gold prices. It seems that the “hardline” anti-stimulus stance espoused early in the summer may not be so “hardline” after all.

Gold is gaining even as the dollar rebounds. The greenback attracted interest as a drop in the NIKKEI weighed on European and U.S. shares. Additionally, the dollar has been boosted by expectations of some decent U.S. data this week, beginning with July retail sales on Tuesday. Good economic data, along with indications of still tepid inflation, are likely to heighten Fed taper expectations further.

It’s nice to see that gold and silver seem to be dismissing the taper scenario today. Perhaps the market’s focus has now shifted to worries over the looming budget/debt ceiling debate. Gold ETFs saw inflows in excess of $44 bln in July, the biggest of which — the SPDR Gold Trust — recorded its first inflows in two-months on Friday. Are the paper players finally returning?

Note also that silver is leading the PMs higher today. The gold/silver ratio, which stalled shy of the 70 level two-weeks ago, is now engaged in a much needed correction and has traded as low as 62.59 today.

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Gold-Silver Ratio Seen Rising to 70 Amid Rout

28-Jul (Bloomberg) — An ounce of gold, which bought a three-year high of 66.6 ounces of silver on July 19, will be worth 70 by the end of the year as demand fails to soak up an excess of the cheaper metal, according to UBS AG.

“The silver market is in fabrication surplus, and the only thing that’s keeping it alive is investment demand and there is no meaningful increase in ETFs,” said Dominic Schnider, head of commodities research at UBS’s wealth-management unit in Singapore. “In an environment where gold falls, silver simply just does more, it’s more volatile.”

[source]

PG View: Silver tends to get a smaller allocation from most of our clients because of that additional volatility. Our clients tend to be wealth preservation minded investors. Silver can be complimentary to their core gold holdings, we recommend it be a fairly small percentage of the total allocation to precious metals.

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U.S. Mint’s Sales of Silver Coins Reach 1H Record in 2013

17-Jun (The Wall Street Journal) — The U.S. Mint’s sales of silver coins have set a record high in the first half of 2013 as lower prices and limited availability of coins fanned investor appetite for bullion coins.

The Mint has already sold 23.3 million ounces of silver coins so far in 2013, with two more weeks of June to go.

The Mint’s first-half sales were buoyed by record high sales in January and April, totalling 7.5 million and 4.1 million ounces of silver respectively. But more recently, sales of silver coins have tailed off, with 3.5 million ounces sold in May and just 1.6 million ounces so far in June.

[source]

silvereaglesales

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The Daily Market Report

Gold & Silver Snap-Back from Sharp Losses


20-May (USAGOLD) — Gold fell in overseas trading on Monday, led by silver which plummeted to new 2-1/2 year lows. There were indications from Asia that an “unidentified investor” sold a large amount of silver when the CME’s Globex platform opened. The CME Group later confirmed that silver trading was halted four times overnight.

So another big sell-off, perhaps perpetrated by a single large seller in the paper market. Sounds hauntingly familiar.

The following was posted at the ZeroHedge blog early in Asia:

Not a moment after someone was slammed with a massive margin call following the hit of 102 USDJPY stops as we noted moments ago, was that same someone(s) forced to dump a whole lot of silver in thin, no volume trading taking out the entire bid stack on what can only be described as “get me the hell out and pay me anything” liquidation, sending the precious metal to just over $20, before yet another round of buying programs kicked in, and sent it right back up, allowing those quick enough to capitalize on some foolish macro trader’s blowing up to pocket a huge profit before Japan has even woken up.

The dive in silver pulled the gold market down to within striking distance of the mid-April low at 1321.22. However, as ZeroHedge suggested, prices didn’t stay down there for long.

Both silver and gold snapped back sharply. By mid-session in New York, silver had staged nearly a 10% rally from the $21.16 low set overseas, regaining the $23 level. Gold losses stalled shy of the 1321.22 support level and then rallied all the way back to $1399.60, an intraday rally of more than $60 (4.6%).

This comes on a day when the U.S. debt ceiling is put back in place, following a brief suspension. While Treasury thinks that they can get us through the summer by employing extraordinary measures, the gold market has fared pretty well generally speaking as the world has limped from debt crisis to debt crisis. Perhaps today’s volatility is the metals market acknowledgement that we still have a major debt problem on our hands, and it simply is not going to go away.

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Silver falls; gold heads for longest slide in four years

20-May (Reuters) — Silver hit a 2-1/2 year low on Monday, prompted by heavy fund liquidation in Asian trade, while gold was on track for its longest run of losses since March 2009 weighed by speculation that the U.S. Federal Reserve might rein in its economic stimulus programme.

Investors have been dumping gold and silver, which are down 20 percent and 30 percent respectively this year, while stocks and the dollar have risen on an improving global economic outlook.

…Yuichi Ikemizu, branch manager for Standard Bank in Tokyo said an unidentified investor sold off a big chunk of silver holdings on Monday morning.

“The drastic move lower happened pretty much after the Chicago Mercantile Exchange’s (CME) electronic platform Globex opening,” MKS head of trading Afshin Nabavi said.

“The move was exacerbated by the fact that it happened when liquidity was very thin in Asian trade,” he added. “If the same happened in London or New York hours, the size of the liquidation might have been cushioned by higher volumes.”

[source]

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Silver Plunges to Lowest Since 2010 as Gold Drops for Eighth Day

20-May (Bloomberg) — Silver slid to the lowest since September 2010, sending its ratio to gold to the highest in almost 33 months, while bullion extended the longest slump in four years as investment holdings contracted and stocks rallied.

Silver slumped 28 percent this year, making it the worst-performing precious metal, on concern that industrial use isn’t strong enough at a time when demand is waning for a protection of wealth. Silver held in exchange-traded products dropped to a four-month low on May 17, while hedge funds increased bets on lower prices by the most since March in the week to May 14. Global equities reached the highest since June 2008.

“Silver is essentially a poor man’s version of gold,” Robin Bhar, an analyst at Societe Generale SA in London, said today by phone. “It’s a precious metal and precious metals are under pressure. Secondly, it’s an industrial metal. There are too many concerns about slowing growth.”

[source]

PG View: Gold has snapped back into positive territory, albeit just slightly. Silver remains negative, but is nearly 7% off the intraday low.

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The Fed’s Big Lie, Gold, Silver & The Reality Of Inflation

25-Apr (KingWorldNews) — On the heels of the Fed saying inflation is tame, today acclaimed money manager Stephen Leeb told King World News the that the Fed is lying and demonstrated the tremendous inflation the average family faces today vs the 1990s. Leeb also spoke about gold and silver.

[source]

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Posted in Gold News, Gold Views, inflation, Silver News, Silver Views |

Sinclair – Full-Blown Panic As People Ask “Where Is The Gold?”

24-Apr (KingWorldNews) — Today legendary trader Jim Sinclair warned King World News about the full-blown panic that has erupted in both the financial world, and the gold market as well, as people ask, “Where is the gold?” Below is what Sinclair, who was once called on by former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker to assist during a Wall Street crisis, had to say in this remarkable interview.

…So the correlation between the Hunt [Brothers] situation and the present situation, both have to do with the key word, ‘supply.’

it’s become obvious to anybody who understands the gold market that the paper market is a total fraud.

…Key market participants also understand that the Western central bank gold has been leased out and it is gone.

[source]

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U.S. Mint Silver-Coin Sales Gain to All-Time High in January

30-Jan (Bloomberg) — Sales of American Eagle silver coins by the U.S. Mint jumped to a record this month on increased demand for an alternative to currencies as the U.S. central bank presses on with unprecedented stimulus.

Sales surged to 7.42 million ounces so far in January, the biggest monthly total since 1986, when the Washington-based Mint began the transactions, Michael White, a spokesman, said in a phone interview yesterday. The figure compares with the 1.635 million ounces sold in December, according to mint data.

So-called loose monetary policies and rising industrial consumption will support silver demand, according to Morgan Stanley, which described the metal as a “cheap gold proxy” in a Jan. 24 report. Prices have more than doubled since 2008 as the U.S. Federal Reserve, which concludes a two-day policy meeting today, boosts stimulus to spur a recovery. Investment holdings of silver reached an all-time high this month.

[source]

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The Daily Market Report

Silver Regains $32 as Gold Consolidates Below $1700


23-Jan (USAGOLD) — This week, the precious metals are being underpinned by fresh monetary easing by the Bank of Japan, amid heightened worries about central bank independence. The BoJ doubled its inflation target to 2% on Tuesday and pledged to buy an additional ¥13 trillion in assets each month beginning in 2014. This move was widely expected in light of the intense political pressure applied by the new Prime Minister, prompting Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann to call out Japan specifically for “alarming violations” of central bank autonomy. I presume Weidmann was referring in part to Abe’s threat to nationalize the BoJ if they didn’t see things his way.

BoJ governor Shirakawa categorized the new policy as “a resolute advance” toward easier money. In fact, the BoJ policy rate has been 0.0-0.1% for four-years now; money can’t get much easier than that. It’s amusing that the 2007 high in the call rate at 0.5% would now be considered extremely tight policy. Rates haven’t been above 1% in Japan since the mid-1990s.

So as Japan advances resolutely toward easier money, it’s worth noting that this strategy has been a pretty decisive failure since the BoJ began cutting rates more than twenty-years ago. Ah, but easier monetary policy is the path of least resistance, requiring little effort (save a little arm twisting) on the part of politicians. In fact, it frequently allows those politicians to avoid — or perhaps more accurately forestall — painful fiscal reforms. I suspect that when PM Abe gets to install his own man to head the BoJ in April, we’ll see those new asset purchases sooner rather than later.

Mohamed El-Erian, CEO and co-CIO of bond giant PIMCO, wrote yesterday that “Japan is not the first country to go down [the path of actively trying to weaken its currency]. Several advanced and emerging economies preceded it, and I suspect that quite a few will follow it.”

The prospect of a currency war seems be an overarching theme at this year’s World Economic Forum in Davos as well. If the world’s financial, political and academic powerhouses are concerned about beggar-thy-neighbor currency devaluations, perhaps you should be as well.

Gold of course is the classic hedge against currency debasement, but hard assets in general should benefit as investors seek shelter from currency devaluation. As we noted in commentary a week ago, the white metals (led by platinum) have been outperforming so far this year. Silver is up an impressive 7.1% so far in 2013. By comparison, gold is up a scant 1% since the first of the year. So, let’s take a quick look at silver:

Silver has pushed convincingly back above $32.00 this week, establishing new five-week highs and threatening the 100-day moving average at $32.57. As the near-term technical picture brightens, it’s important to remember that silver has been confined to a broad — nearly $24 dollar — range since 2011. To provide a little perspective, the midpoint of that range is presently well protected at $37.93.

Weekly Silver Chart

While recent tests below the 200-day moving average warrant a measure of caution, these losses could not be sustained and silver is now comfortably 5.5% above this important longer-term indicator of trend. While the volatility in recent years has been considerable, action since the high just below $50 was established in April 2011 has the characteristics of a continuation pattern. When you consider that silver was trading in the <$4-$8 range from the mid 1980s until 2005, I'm going to say the underlying trend is still positive. Inflows into derivatives indexed to the price of silver have been very strong in recent weeks, but more significantly demand for physical silver has been nothing short of robust. The U.S. mint sold out of the new 2013 strikes of the popular silver Eagle within the first two weeks of the year, resulting in a suspension of sales that continues to this day as the mint works to replenish its inventory. The supply dearth has driven premiums significantly higher on one ounce bullion coins. Chinese demand for silver is living up to expectations for a 10% increase this year. Many Chinese are viewing silver as a less expensive alternative to gold as a means of wealth preservation. GoldCore reported today that HSBC has been quietly "acquiring large amounts of silver bullion." HSBC reportedly has purchases $876 million (PLN3.65 bln) worth of silver from Polish producer and refiner KGHM in the past twelve-months alone, with a contract in place to provide PLN1.67 bln worth of silver in 2013.

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Posted in Daily Market Report, Silver News, Silver Views |