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Category — Silver

What’s Next for the Silver Price?

What’s Next for the Silver Price?

Looking back at the articles I’ve written about silver over the years, if there’s one theme that keeps recurring, it’s the word: ‘frustrating’.

Silver can meander about and do nothing for years. Then, when your back’s turned, it’ll suddenly spike to unheard-of levels, making its owners rich.

Then, just as suddenly, it’ll plummet, leaving all those who hold the metal heading for the poor house.

Yet, for all its volatility, for all the dark rumours of shortages and manipulation, it trades in a remarkably symmetrical pattern.

For a few brief hours in the spring 2011, it cost $50 an ounce. Now it’s less than half that price, at $23.

So is it time to be playing the silver game once again? [Read more →]

May 18, 2013   Comments Off

Here’s Proof the Silver Bullion Market is Alive and Well.

Here’s Proof the Silver Bullion Market is Alive and Well

Buyers are viewing the current fall in the price of gold and silver as an opportunity to grab a bargain — not a time to panic.

Have you tried to buy some gold or silver bullion yourself?

You might find it’s not as easy as you thought. I recommend you go through one of the usual dealers to see what I mean (and get it a sensible price). Just be prepared for a wait. This note on the Ainslie Bullion site says it all:

‘We’d like to apologise to our customers at having to close our web store this afternoon. After the craziness last night we have been overwhelmed on the trading floor all day with buying at these prices. With a back log of internet orders as well we could not be confident of having stock to supply new orders and took the decision to close the website rather than sell something we couldn’t deliver. We hope to have it back up soon tonight after a stock take now trading has finished.’

As I say, I’d recommend buying from a dealer. But to see what happens when buyers and sellers meet directly on the free market, also check out eBay.com.au [Read more →]

April 28, 2013   Comments Off

Gold, Silver and Bird Farmers.

Gold, Silver and Bird Farmers

Last was a tough week for hard assets. Prices plummeted for goldsilver, platinum, copper, oil and more. It was a broad, market-wide retreat — helped along by the ‘usual suspect’ market movers, who likely wanted to knock things down for their own nefarious reasons.

At some moments, the sell side was in a panic. People apparently bailed from large positions — although I believe that as things quickly evolved (too quickly, actually), many jumpers were forced to exit due to margin calls.

Lower prices for ‘long-term’ wealth-protection ideas like gold, silver, etc., have knocked down the share price for many a producing company.

All in all, many hard asset portfolios have taken tough hits, especially those of investors who bought in over the past year, and certainly in recent months. What happened? Where do we go? Has the hard asset train derailed? Let’s think it through.

I have to admit that a few weeks ago I did not foresee the sharp asset dive that we’ve just experienced. I’m more than aware that gold and silver prices go down as well as up. But I didn’t see a super-sharp selloff coming.

For example, Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold shares dropped from the $33 range to the vicinity of $29. Barrick shares dropped from over $25 to just under $19. These levels are five-year lows — as low as the respective companies have been since late 2008 and early 2009, during the worst days of the last crash. [Read more →]

April 24, 2013   Comments Off

Silver ‘$100 Within Two Years’.

Silver ‘$100 Within Two Years’

You could say that buying gold is like drinking vintage Grange wine.

In which case buying silver is like doing double shots of Bundaberg rum.

They both have the desired effect – the latter does it more effectively, but at the risk of a bigger hangover. Silver’s volatility means it swings wildly between the buy and the sell zone.

The good news is that Aussie dollar denominated silver is in the buy zone right now. And if history is any guide, it could take off like a rocket from here.

Last year it bounced 35% in two months from the buy zone. The time before that was as far back as 2010, when it soared 182% in a year.

So what could be in store from here?

In yesterday’s Money Morning, I gave a sneak preview of my recent interview with Eric Sprott, CEO of Sprott Asset Management, who manages $11 billion in the precious metals market.

His views on gold were very bullish. But today I’d like to show you just how bullish he is on silver… [Read more →]

March 31, 2013   Comments Off

Hi Ho Silver: Making the Case for This Precious Metal.

Hi Ho Silver: Making the Case for This Precious Metal

Even though the newsletter I write for Casey Research is focused primarily on gold, our metals investments cover all the precious metals, and when warranted, some base metals plays too. And with the markets in the state they are, I want to say something about silver

My talk at the Vancouver Resource Investment Conference in January was titled ‘Is D-Day for Silver Approaching?’, and highlighted the delicate balance between supply and demand. I concluded that there would be insufficient precious metal to meet a major spike in investment demand if it were to occur, leading to all kinds of negative consequences for those who don’t own silver (and lots of wonderful rewards for those who do).

I had plenty of compelling charts and convincing data. But here’s the rub: I don’t believe that what’s ahead for the price of silver and gold will have anything to do with that data. After all, there are articles from researchers and analysts that use similar data to paint a bearish outlook for the metal.

Instead, my reasoning is based on psychology. Here’s a good example… [Read more →]

March 27, 2013   Comments Off

You Want Proof the Stock Market’s Heading Up? Try This…

You Want Proof the Stock Market’s Heading Up? Try This…

Is that it?

Is the Cyprus crisis over?

That seems to be the message coming out of Europe…or not.

If it is over, it means you can rest easy now…until the next crisis hits.

In last Friday’s Money Morning we explained why it’s a mistake to sell this stock market. In fact, we laid it on the line and told you to buy this market.

Today, we’ll give you another reason, and provide ‘proof’ that despite the talk of crisis, this is the best time to buy a certain class of stocks…

Our old pal, Diggers & Drillers editor Dr Alex Cowie, spent last week mixing it up with the resources elite at the Hong Kong Mines & Money conference.

As you may have read in the reports he sent back, he’s as bullish as heck about the prospects forgold and gold stocks. And he’s not the only one.

One of the keynote speakers was gold and silver investing guru Eric Sprott. The Doc sat down with him on Friday morning to chew the fat over the commodities markets, and especially gold. [Read more →]

March 27, 2013   Comments Off

Gold Update: Direct From the Hong Kong Mines & Money Conference.

Gold Update: Direct From the Hong Kong Mines & Money Conference

Yesterday was the first day of the Hong Kong Mines & Money conference.

After the reports of fairly morose atmospheres at the other two big globalmining conferences held round this time of year – the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Conference (PDAC) and the South African Indaba conference – I’m happy to say the mood has been bullish.

The turnout has been strong, with about 4,000 here.

The venue is pretty impressive, with sweeping views of the bay. Hong Kong is in full flow too. Rather than get a cab, I walked an hour to dinner with friends earlier to get a view of the bustle on the streets. My limited impression of Hong Kong is one of plenty of economic activity. Property prices have certainly been good round here. One guy I heard about had paid $2 million for a small apartment.

The View from the Gold Miners Eric Sprott was the big draw card as the keynote speaker today, though the CEO of Newcrest, Greg Robinson, opened up proceedings. His views on gold were bullish, as they would be, and he hit some of the points I made in my speech the day before.

He pulled out a few other cool facts. For instance, I didn’t know that half of the money spent in exploration globally last year was spent looking for gold. And with very little result. No one is finding big deposits any more, no matter what they spend. So future supply will be hamstrung. Much highergold prices will be needed to stimulate future supply.

As for production costs, they have soared 256% in ten years:

cash costs jumped by 256% over ten years

 

According to Newcrest’s Greg Robinson, the industry is ‘acutely aware of it’. Hopefully they’ll pull their finger out and do something about it.

On that topic, I weighed in on this after a later talk given by ‘mining associates’ who reckoned the reason costs have soared so much for gold is the drastically falling ore grades the gold industry is chasing in the name of bigger production volumes.

Low grade is expensive to mine, to truck, and to treat. He reckoned that’s why the majors steer clear of gold – it’s so hard to control costs.

Eric Sprott drew a decent crowd for his talk, which focused on precious metals of course. He covered a ton of stuff, starting with a look at debt at the sovereign level, and kicked off with a quote from Mark Carney, the Bank of Canada chief:


‘The Global Minsky moment has arrived. Debt tolerance has decisively turned. The initially well-founded optimism that launched the decades-long credit boom has given way to a belated pessimism that seeks to reverse it.’

The shenanigans in the Cypriot banking system are the perfect backdrop to all this. Sprott reckoned the traders with a short position on gold will be in pain given gold has moved $30 against them in the last few weeks.

With bank runs in Europe possible, he emphasised, ‘having money in the banks – a highly leveraged counter-party – is a risk’. The troika (EU, IMF, and ECB) would do all they could as, ‘No one wants the first domino to fall,’ – but options are running out.

By the way, the ECB has pumped $1.2 trillion into the European financial system in the last few weeks via bank swaps apparently. I must have missed the memo on that one. Clearly there is some trouble brewing.

As for Germany repatriating its gold from the US: How can it take seven years to repatriate 350 tonnes, when China can import that much every six months? Just maybe it’s because the US doesn’t have Germany’s gold

Some Other Investment Angles As always, Sprott loves silver. The supply of investible silver is three times bigger than gold, but investors are buying 50 times more than gold according to the US Mint website…so at some point this will have to translate into a supply crunch.

In the 1980?s, Volker admitted that in reference to the gold run of the 70?s ‘the biggest mistake we made was not controlling the gold price’. Sprott expects that the gold price is being similarly managed today to create the illusion of recovery, when nothing could be further from the truth. During Barack Obama’s presidency, the number of food stamp users has jumped form 20 million to 47 million, or 15% of the US population.

As for gold stocks, he doesn’t doubt they’re immensely cheap, but thinks we need to see a sustained move in gold for gold stocks to follow suit. Gold above USD$1,700 would be a good start.

A big theme in the conference is the novel ways of financing the mining sector. With equity hard to come by, two new players are moving in: private equity, where private money buys a company lock stock and barrel, finances it, and turns it around; and the other is royalty streaming – where private money finances it in return of a cut of the product for a long period. There’s more talk about this tomorrow, so I’ll hold back on it until them.

There was a great panel debate about China’s economy, mostly held in Cantonese by Chinese bankers, so I listened via translator. It was pretty interesting seeing it from their eyes. This is something I’ll cover in the next issue of Diggers & Drillers.

I’ve spoken to a dozen companies today, and need to run through all their details when I get back. There is plenty of new fodder to run the ruler over.

One seminar that was pretty cool was on Myanmar, formerly Burma, which is taking off now it’s opening up. Apparently if you want to make a quick buck on property, you should go and check it out – its property market grew at 47% in 2012! Not bad for a year’s work!

That’s it for me tonight. I’m stuffed. I’ll check in tomorrow.

Dr Alex Cowie
Editor, Diggers & Drillers

This article is contributed by Money Morning. Click Here to Subscribe to their free newsletter.

March 23, 2013   Comments Off

The Secret Silver Stash Behind a Vault in Switzerland.

The Secret Silver Stash Behind a Vault in Switzerland

Did you hear the U.S. Mint just ran out of silver? In mid-January, the Mint suspended sale of the 2013 run of its popular U.S. ‘Eagles’.

The new silver Eagles sold out fast. They went on sale, and buyers bought everything they could lay hands on. Within days, the shelves at the Mint were stripped bare. It’s not the first time that this has happened.

The Mint quickly announced that it’s obtaining new supplies of silver. It will stamp out more Eagle coins. There will be more to buy, or so they say. And yet… people in the silver markets are squirming – and I’ll tell you more about that, below…

Right now, silver sells for US$31.50 per ounce, give or take. That’s if you can find somebody to sell you their silver at that price. If you’re a normal, everyday retail buyer, good luck trying.

Let’s say you want to Buy some silver. You call up one of those companies that advertise on the radio and find out that there’s a markup to $40 or more for 1-ounce bullion coins. That’s if they have any to sell to the likes of you. After all, are you a big wheeler-dealer?

If you want the fancy versions of silver coins – ‘uncirculated’ and ‘proof’ specimens – the price is twice (or more) the posting for basic metal. [Read more →]

February 16, 2013   Comments Off

Buy Silver – the War Against the China Bears Begins.

Buy Silver – the War Against the China Bears Begins

Watch out!

Silver is finally looking ready for action.

And this is as much to do with what my mate and regular Money Morning editor, Kris Sayce, now calls ‘The Doc’s war against the China Bears’.

In case you missed it, I’ve kicked off the year by saying the China bears are about to get smoked.

But sounding my China-Bull ‘battle-cry’ doesn’t just mean that industrial metals are on the menu.

Because a resurgent Chinese economy is also good for precious metals, including a long-time favourite of mine: silver.

Really it comes down to just two things. Firstly, China recently became a net importer of silver.

Secondly, as I’ll now show you, silver is much, much rarer than anyone thinks[Read more →]

January 30, 2013   Comments Off

How to Buy Gold and Silver.

How to Buy Gold and Silver

When it comes to buying physical gold and silver, there are a range of options you can take.Precious metals Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) are the cheapest and most convenient way to buy and sell gold and silver.

But if you take that route, you also expose yourself to counterparty risk. In short, when you buy an ETF, the metal you buy is not held by the ETF provider. It’s held by a large global bank, like HSBC or Morgan Stanley.

If the bank goes bust, your gold and silver could be gone too. Besides, you can never really be sure they’re holding the gold they claim.

Why do you need to worry about this?
Because the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission, with the Gold Anti Trust Action Committee, reports there is now one hundred times more ‘paper gold’ in the world than physically exists above ground.

For this reason we believe it’s much safer to have the bullion in your hand (details on how to store it in a moment). [Read more →]

January 15, 2013   Comments Off