NEW YORK, March 3 (FinanceEnquiry.com) – Gold has showed an excellent place in the commodity market so far in 2012, returning above 13% year-to-date. Regardless of the growth, it has been still outshined by silver. The metal has returned a huge 27% year-to-date. Several factors that have aided the excellent run of the precious metals in the existing year are increasing inflationary assumption, constant moderation in policies from the central banks and heightened macroeconomic doubt in many countries. Generally, the precious metals act as safe haven assets and inflation hedge.
Interest rates in developed and many emerging markets continue to be low, making investors put their money in precious metals for better store of wealth. As a result, precious metals’ investment demand, in most of the developed and emerging markets, has been increasing. Compared to gold, silver is not identified as a reserve asset. As a result, there is a very less amount of silver stocks owned by governments or central banks. In the past, silver has had less association with many asset classes and supports in expanding a portfolio. Additionally, like platinum, silver is also used in a large range of industrial applications. Hence, the level of global economic activity affects its price.
Nearly half of the metal’s total demand comes from industrial applications, however, the demand from jewelry/silverware/coins & medals producers accounts for nearly 30% of the demand. Above 65% of the global supply of the metal is from South Africa. Silver had a negative return of approximately 8% in 2011, as the fears of global recession led to a decline in industrial demand for the metal, however, gold has been on the rise for eleven years in a row. Basically, silver metal and the exchange traded funds (ETFs) are more unstable than gold, due to which, the investors may find suitable investment opportunities in silver on any pull-backs.
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