The financial backdrop to the current prices of precious metals like silver and gold is that trillions of dollars and other currencies have been created to reflate stock markets and attempt to create a recovery in the property market, which will only serve to re-inflate real estate prices back to their former unsustainable levels once again. This seems so utterly obvious, and yet it is rarely discussed.
Furthermore, far too many investors continue to rely on and even hope for the continuance of the status quo, despite the fact that their futile wishes for the financial alchemy to prevail — so that the “free lunch” creation of money from nothing but paper and ink will lead to more jobs and economic growth — have been increasingly frustrated.
Trading Volume Speaks Volumes
Consider for a moment the remarkably high volume of COMEX contracts traded during the days when the spot prices for gold and/or silver were driven sharply lower.
An illusion of weakness tends to prevail in these situations because the majority of precious metal traders do not seem to understand the difference between a paper claim and the real thing, nor do they seem to realize that only paper contracts or claims are being sold when the price of the precious metals drops — not the actual metal itself. Basically, the futures contract seller cannot be forced to deliver physical metal, and so sellers can simply settle their profit or loss on the trade in cash.
Furthermore, the fact that such price drops are typically initiated by the dumping of huge swaths of paper contracts by proprietary traders working at giant bullion banks that are too big to bail and/or fail, makes them seem more like manipulative attempts to scare the precious metals market into a selling panic.
No one is actually selling real bullion during these allegedly “not-for-profit”-led precious metal sell-offs. Instead, the paper market is moving the metal prices as the tail seemingly wags the dog.
Perhaps this was once a civilized way to discover the fair price of a commodity, but in today's age — regardless of the obvious and highly questionable concentration of only a few sellers comprising the entire net short position of the futures market — every market trades in a high speed, momentum-based, and computer program monitored environment.