MetalMiner‘s monthly Global Precious Metals MMI® ticked downward once again, registering a value of 86 in January, a decrease of 1.1% from 87 in December. This downward turns follows a slight uptick from November to December, which in turn stemmed three straight months of losses.
As Europe holds its breath over whether Greece will pull out of the euro, gold and silver are rising again based on investors’ bullish bets. But at the moment, our eyes are on platinum.
Platinum in Focus
Good news for platinum producers comes in the form of still-strong US auto sales, which have helped keep the US manufacturing economy humming (yet have not corresponded with our dropping Automotive MMI®, which tracks metals used by the automotive industry). Although the US platinum price tracked by the MetalMiner IndX dropped over the past month, the China and Japan prices rose, and demand is looking good.
As reported by MetalMiner Editor-at-large Stuart Burns, according to a recent report by the newly formed World Platinum Investment Council, demand remained robust in 2014, growing at 4.9% “thanks in large part to the European auto industry, which is heavily dependent on platinum for emissions control on light duty diesel engines, but also from the chemical, glass, and medical applications industries. Lower oil prices may also boost refining activity and hence PGM catalyst demand in 2015.
Analysts at banks or working with producers predictably see a robust demand outlook for 2015 and are predicting that prices could rise from current $1,200/ounce levels to $1,550-1,600/ounce in 2015. They may be right, but we are a little more skeptical. A 5-week strike failed to boost prices as expected. Sanctions on Russia – another bullish development, the industry suggests – are thankfully not targeted at the metals industry and, hence, as they stand are unlikely to unduly disadvantage supply from the world’s second-largest producer.”
This Month’s Key Price Drivers
Following a 4.7% decline in price, US silver finished the month at $15.69 per ounce. After rising the previous month, Chinese silver prices dropped 2.9% to $547.99 per kilogram. US gold bullion prices fell 2.5% to $1,183 per ounce after rising the previous month. After rising the previous month, US platinum bar prices dropped 2.4% to $1,204 per ounce. US palladium bar prices fell 1.1% to $796.00 per ounce after rising the previous month. After rising the previous month, Indian silver prices dropped 0.6% to $587.81 per kilogram. Indian gold bullion prices fell 0.6% to $425.61 per 10 grams after rising the previous month.
Japanese silver finished the month at $5.15 per 10 grams after gaining 10.1%. Japanese gold bullion reached $38.35 per gram after a 5.0% increase for the month. Following a 4.5% change in price, Japanese palladium bar closed the month at $26.59 per gram. It was a strong month for Japanese platinum bar. The metal posted a 3.1% increase, finishing at $38.96 per gram. Finishing the month at $29.01 per gram, Chinese palladium bar recorded a 1.7% increase. At $38.46, Chinese gold bullion finished the month up 0.2% per gram.
Chinese platinum bar held pat last month at $41.58 per gram.
The Global Precious Metals MMI® collects and weights 14 global precious metal price points to provide a unique view into precious metal price trends over a 30-day period. For more information on the Global Precious Metals MMI®, how it’s calculated or how your company can use the index, please drop us a note at: info (at) agmetalminer (dot) com.