Silver Up 44.7% in First Half of 2016.
While investors have primarily focused on gold’s bull run, silver has quietly outperformed the yellow metal.
Between Jan. 1 and July 11, the price of silver increased 44.7%, according to the Silver Institute. The price of gold increased 27.7% in that same time period.
The Silver Institute said the surge in the price of silver was “fueled by increased investor interest in silver as a safe haven asset and as leveraged exposure to gold’s price rally.”
Demand for silver has been robust in both paper and physical markets. Exchange traded holdings of the white metal increased by 44.3 million ounces through the first half of 2016, hitting a record high of 662.2 million ounces.
Silver coin sales set a record in 2015 and kept up the pace through the early months of 2016, according to the Silver Institute:
Silver coin sales increased in the first quarter of 2016 by 29% globally, according to the GFMS Thomson Reuters Quarterly Coin Sales Survey. Regionally, North America has continued to be the bright spot in silver investment product demand. In the coin market, coin sales grew at double digit paces in all the major regions (North America, Europe, Japan, Asia, Africa, & Other), as coin demand has remained elevated since the second half of last year.”
Like gold, silver leads a double life as both money and a commodity. But it also plays a third role as an industrial metal, as a recent NewsMax report explains:
Silver is essential to the electronics industry. Virtually every circuit board, cell phone, computer, and even flat screen TV depends on a steady supply. It’s also crucial to the booming solar panel and air conditioning industries. As we all know, silver also finds a huge market in the jewelry and housewares industries. But what may be a surprise for many is its growing role in medicine. Silver’s powerful antibacterial and antimicrobial properties mean it has an ever-expanding variety of uses in creams, surgical instruments, clothing and medical devices. As more and more bugs and viruses become resistant to traditional antibiotics, silver’s ability to create a sterile environment will become increasingly crucial.”
The sensitivity of industrial demand to economic factors can make silver more volatile than gold, but the NewsMax report noted that the recent surge in the price of silver appears to be primarily driven by investors seeking safe haven.
Yet in the worldwide meltdown that followed Brexit, silver shot above $21 an ounce, its highest since 2014. Why? Because investors were leaning on silver for its safe haven qualities, treating it like a more secure version of cash, rather than as an industrial commodity. This jump in demand, and price, was a clear sign investors are looking for the most sizeable safe haven they can find, particularly with the fate of both the British pound and the euro in serious doubt.”
Silver Institute executive director Michael DiRienzo said he’s seeing a lot first-time interest in silver by investors.
We are hearing from many retail investors interested in gaining exposure to silver for the reasons of portfolio diversification and silver’s strong fundamentals.”
Courtesy: Samuel Bryan
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