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Silver & Gold See Best Year in Decade, with White Outshining Yellow Metal

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·3 min read
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By Barani Krishnan

Investing.com - “There’s a silver lining in every crisis.” Whoever came up with that probably had no inkling that it would apply one day to the price of silver amid the coronavirus crisis. But here we are.

As silver neared the final hours of 2020, the “white metal,” as it’s also called, was up a whopping 48% on the year for its spot price, eclipsing even that of gold, the yellow metal that’s the darling of the investing and vanity world.

Spot gold, which reflects the price of bullion, was up 25% on the year. To be sure, both were having their best annum in a decade in what was also proving to be a banner year for the entire precious metals complex, which includes the six PGMs, or Platinum Group Metals, made up chiefly of platinum and palladium.

But silver was clearly the outlier of the lot, benefiting most from the dollar’s tumble to near three-year lows amid near-zero interest rates in the U.S. and U.S. federal debt extension into the trillions as Congress issued two relief packages for the COVID-19. Investors use precious metals as a hedge against inflation.

Analysts retained a favorable outlook for silver, gold and most precious metals into 2021, though that could come with some market correction as well, they said.

“A resumption of the broader December trend higher may likely continue in 2021,” Thomas Westwater, a technical analyst on gold, said in a blog on the Daily FX portal published a couple of days ago.

“Covid-19 remains a lingering question mark for traders,” Westwater said, adding that while price consolidation was highly likely in the short-term, “higher ground appears to be favored in the technical outlook.”

In Thursday’s trade, spot silver } on New York’s Comex was at $26.42 per ounce by 11:15 AM ET (16:15 GMT), down 22 cents or 0.8% on the day. The session high for was $26.71 while the peak for the year was $29.86, set in August.

“Silver bulls' next upside price objective is closing prices above solid technical resistance at the December high of $27.635 an ounce,” said Jim Wyckoff, writing on the portal of bullion trader Kitco.

Silver futures were down 2 cents, or 0.1%, at $26.55. The session high for was $26.87 while the peak for the year was $30.36, set in August. For the year, silver futures were up 47%.

U.S. gold futures for February delivery Comex were up $8.85, or 0.5%, at $1,902.25. The session high was $1,904.35. But the peak for the year was more than $100 higher at $2,089, set in August. For the year, gold futures were up 23%.

The spot price of gold, which algorithms and hedge funds use to ultimately decide the direction in futures, was at $1,898.51, up $3.84 or 0.2% on the day. The session high was $1,900.39 while the peak for the year was $2,073, set in August.

The Dollar Index, pitted against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.2% at 89.85, after hitting April 2018 lows of 89.48. For the year, the index was down 6%.

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