Rising Bond Yields, Falling Industrial Demand Behind Slumping Silver Prices

Costs simply wrapped up their worst four-month stretch since November 2014, dragged down by expectations for increased rates of interest and a slowdown in manufacturing exercise. Entrance-month silver futures have fallen greater than 21% in that interval to round $22 a troy ounce. 

Silver is each a treasured steel and an industrial commodity, utilized in merchandise as numerous as jewellery, photo voltaic panels and semiconductors. Now, the approaching rollback of pandemic monetary-stimulus measures is hurting precious-metals costs on the similar time that international manufacturing bottlenecks, vitality shortages and manufacturing slowdowns scale back industrial demand. 

Costs, which slipped 0.3% Wednesday to $22.51, stand close to their lowest ranges in a yr, making silver one of the worst-performing assets for 2021 in a bunch tracked by The Wall Avenue Journal. Shares of miners reminiscent of

First Majestic Silver Corp.

AG 1.38%


Hecla Mining Co.

HL 0.65%

fell greater than 25% final quarter, whereas the

Global X Silver Miners ETF

SIL 1.00%

misplaced round 18%. 

“Proper now, all treasured metals are reacting to less-than-anticipated industrial demand and the mixture of a shift within the Fed coverage of tapering and a stronger greenback; all of these issues have made a cocktail for unfavourable metals,” mentioned

James Metal,

chief precious-metals analyst at HSBC. 

Silver and gold have a tendency to slip when buyers count on financial progress and inflation, growing the enchantment of riskier belongings reminiscent of shares, or people who pay earnings, reminiscent of bonds. Declines accelerated in September after the Federal Reserve signaled it was ready to start paring back asset purchasing in November and will increase rates of interest subsequent yr amid dangers of a lengthier-than-expected bounce in inflation. Gold, which fell 0.9% final quarter, is among the many yr’s worst-performing belongings.

Current positive factors in bond yields have fueled an increase within the U.S. greenback that can also be weighing on metals together with silver, by making commodities priced in {dollars} costlier for abroad patrons. 

WSJ Greenback Index, which tracks the foreign money in opposition to a basket of 16 others, is buying and selling close to its highest ranges in a yr.

Hedge funds and different speculative buyers have grown extra cautious on silver recently, chopping web bets on increased silver costs to their lowest degree since June 2019, based on Commodity Futures Buying and selling Fee information by means of the week of Sept. 21.

Although U.S. shares have slipped recently, many count on rebounding progress to assist main indexes and examine the current pullback as pure after a yr during which the S&P 500 set dozens of data.  

“In growth-friendly regimes, it’s going to be tough for silver and gold,” mentioned

Hakan Kaya,

commodity portfolio supervisor at Neuberger Berman, who’s shopping for the precious-metal dip. 

The current selloff marks a reversal from early this yr, when day traders piled into the silver market and helped raise costs as excessive as $29.40. Silver posted its largest one-day advance in additional than a decade earlier this yr however costs have retreated roughly 25% since then. 

One issue buoying silver earlier within the yr: expectations that elevated infrastructure spending would assist spur a speedy enhance in using renewable-energy sources, mentioned

Suki Cooper,

a precious-metals analyst at Commonplace Chartered. Silver is utilized in photo voltaic panels.

Silver costs will get better floor if industrial traits enhance and the chip scarcity eases, making the steel’s outlook more healthy in the long run, mentioned Ms. Cooper. 

“There was a variety of early shopping for in silver in anticipation of that demand materializing, so provided that these developments are going to take years to unfold, there’s naturally going to be a dip by way of investor curiosity as a result of they got here into the market early,” Ms. Cooper mentioned.

Write to Hardika Singh at

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