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Silver ETFs Fall on Fed, QE3 Outlook

tlydon@globaltrend.com (Tom Lydon)

Silver exchange traded funds dropped 4% Wednesday in continued selling after the Federal Reserve minutes suggested the central bank likely won’t engage in further quantitative easing unless the economy backslides.

“What we see today is a rather broad-based sell-off in financial markets,” said Carsten Fritsch, an analyst at Commerzbank, in a MarketWatch report. “The trigger was yesterday’s Fed minutes which dashed hopes of (a third round of quantitative easing.)”

The iShares Silver Trust (NYSEArca: SLV), PowerShares DB Silver Fund (NYSEArca: DBS) and ETFS Physical Silver Shares (NYSEArca: SIVR) were down about 4% Wednesday afternoon.

Meanwhile, gold ETF such as SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD) slipped more than 1%.

Gold is weakening toward $1,600 an ounce but some analysts think the long-term trend for the precious metal remains higher.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if we push lower towards $1,600- – that is what we think is a floor and we are unlikely to fall substantially below that,” said Standard Bank analyst Walter de Wet in a Reuters report.

“”We don’t see real interest rates positive this year … We still think globally that monetary supply will continue to grow — maybe not to the same rate as it did but certainly it’s going to grow and these things are positive for gold,” he forecast.

Silver ETFs were up about 17% year to date heading into Wednesday’s trading, while the gold funds have gained 5%.

iShares Silver Trust

Full disclosure: Tom Lydon’s clients own GLD and SLV.