Excerpted from Great Britain’s Market Oracle…
#1) Gold Eagle Sales Are Hot … But Silver Eagles Sales Are Hotter! The U.S. Mint sold more American Gold Eagle bullion coins in November than in each of the previous three months.
With one month remaining, 2010 ranks as the sixth-best year for the Gold Eagle bullion coins. Year-to-date sales from January through November ended at 1,160,500 ounces.
If demand for bullion gold coins continues at the current pace, 2010 will end up as the fourth-best year behind 1999 (2,055,500); 1998 (1,839,500); 1986 (1,787,750); and 2009 (1,425,000).
While that sounds good, sales of silver eagles are leaving gold in the dust, even though (or perhaps, because) silver prices are rising faster than gold prices. CoinNews.Net reveals that silver eagle sales are going through the roof.
The U.S. Mint says 32,890,500 of silver eagle bullion coins were ordered between January and November. That is 4.124 million more than in all of 2009, which previously held the annual sales record.
You may have seen the bears growling that these silver sales indicate a frenzy is at hand and slacking of demand and lower prices are around the corner.
But is it likely that silver would peak when gold isn’t peaking? Gold eagles are a good measure of the buying interest among mom-and-pop investors.
This isn’t the best year in gold eagles, and it’s not even in the top three. So stop worrying about buying at the top of the market in gold OR silver. We aren’t even close.
#2) China’s Huge Appetite for Gold Is Getting Stronger. China is now the world’s biggest producer of gold and consumes all the gold its mines can dig up. China’s miners produced 277.017 metric tonnes of gold so far this year, up 8.8% from the same period last year. While that sounds like a lot, it’s not nearly enough to feed China’s ravenous and growing hunger for gold.
In fact, China imported 209.7 metric tons of gold in the first 10 months of the year. That’s up fivefold compared with the same period last year!
China’s securities regulator has approved the country’s first gold fund designed to invest in overseas-listed gold ETFs. We may have only seen the first course in China’s hunger for gold.
In fact, surging demand from China is already changing the seasonal patterns in the gold price — pushing the annual gold price “peak” from November to February, as gold buying centers around China’s New Year. If current trends continue, the next change may be that February’s peak may not be much of a peak at all.
One more thing — Bloomberg reported that silver exports from China — the world’s largest producer of silver — may slump by 40%! Reason: Silver is an industrial metal, and demand for silver for industrial uses in China is growing by leaps and bounds.
#3) India Dives into Gold and Silver with Both Hands. This summer, many analysts were ready to write off India’s gold market. It seemed the Indian people were sitting on their hands, waiting for lower prices.
But the floodgates of demand opened up as the festival season loomed. India purchased 353 metric tonnes of gold through the end of November. That’s up 113% from the 168 metric tonnes in all of 2007.
As a result, in the third quarter, India’s gold imports hit 624 metric tonnes, passing last year’s total by 100 tonnes, and re-securing India’s spot as the world’s #1 gold buyer.
Part of this is due to the fact that people in India now have access to exchange-traded funds. Investment in India’s gold ETFs tripled in the year through October compared to last year.
When it comes to silver, India is the world’s #1 consumer as well. And imports are up sharply this year, nearing 30-year peaks.