Supply and Demand of Precious Metals
CURRENT SILVER PRICES AND WHAT THEY MEAN
The cost of Gold is driving the increasing use of Silver in the fine jewelry market and the growing demand for clean energy means exponential demand for Silver in the solar industry. Silver is an essential part of converting the sun’s rays into usable energy and each solar panel requires about 1/3 oz of Silver in its manufacture. These are just two examples of growing Silver demand. For investors watching the Silver spot price, this means we could see real competition in acquiring the quantities of Silver required for these and other industries, which could result in higher Silver prices per ounce.
CURRENT GOLD PRICES AND WHAT THEY MEAN
As with all commodities, the greatest influencing factor on the Gold market is supply and demand. Gold is particularly interesting, though, because the Gold market depends less on newly mined Gold than other Precious Metal markets. The Gold “above ground” is still fairly liquid. While about two-thirds of the Gold produced each year goes into jewelry, jewelry in many countries represents liquid wealth. Gold used for personal adornment often makes its way back into circulation after a few years or perhaps a few generations. A small amount of Gold each year goes into medical and industrial applications while the rest goes into investments and exchange-traded Gold funds.
CURRENT PLATINUM PRICES AND WHAT THEY MEAN
Platinum is unique in its scarcity. Platinum is the rarest of the commonly traded Precious Metals and is in high demand for both personal adornment and industrial purposes. Almost half the annual Platinum production goes directly to the automotive industry to help control vehicle emissions; Platinum is likely the hydrogen ignition catalyst in your car’s catalytic converter. Platinum is also experiencing unprecedented demand in the fine jewelry industry. High-end jewelry demand accounts for about one-third of the Platinum mined each year. Resistant to tarnish, Platinum is more durable than Gold or Silver and is considered the height of luxury. Aside from Precious Metal investment products, less well-known applications for Platinum include medical machinery electrodes and use in turbine engines.
CURRENT PALLADIUM PRICES AND WHAT THEY MEAN
While Gold is recognized the world over as carrying intrinsic value, Palladium has a fairly specific market. Its uses in the automotive industry are increasingly important as the global economy turns toward green practices and cutting auto emissions is a key part of that.