This week began with the budget battle. President Obama came out with his $3.7 trillion dollar budget. He pledged to cut $1.1 trillion in spending over the next ten years. Isn’t it odd how politicians propose big spending cuts long after they are out of office, when they no longer have to actually implement them? The budget squabbling between the two parties continues, as they battle over how to reduce spending. Of course, they both focus on 12% of total spending and avoid issues like social security, Medicare, Medicaid and other entitlement programs that make up 88% of the total spending.
Precious metal prices drifted up during the week largely on renewed fears about inflation. In the US, Representative Paul Ryan called on the Fed to take pre-emptive measures now to avoid inflation in the future. On Wednesday, the Producer Price Index came out at 9.6% annualized. The Core Producer Price Index was up an alarming 6% annualized. On Thursday, the CPI, Consumer Price Index came out and as expected it continues to go up. These both spell inflation down the road, if the trend is not reversed.
The Middle East remained in the news all week as violent protests spread from country to country. Three people were reported killed in Bahrain and clashes spread to Libya, Yemen, Iran and Iraq as well. Iranian warships were reported to be crossing the Suez Canal heading for the Mediterranean Sea. As you might imagine, this does not sit well with Israel.
Gold, platinum and palladium all showed good increases for the week, but silver was the shining star. It could very well finish the week up over 7%. Silver is now past its 30-year high. Depending on which analyst you read, silver is either set to continue to rise rapidly or drops like a rock. We do not pretend to know. But we can say this, the silver price to gold price ratio is in the low 40’s and it is usually in the high 50’s. Either silver should go down or gold should go up. Of course, silver could continue to go up and gold goes up faster, closing this gap.
Spot Gold prices opened this week at $1,357.20. The high during the week was on Friday, February 18th, at $1,392.60, while the low for the week occurred on Monday, February 14th, at $1,354.40. Gold ended the week up $33.70 at $1,390.90. This week, the most popular Gold bullion products were 2011 Gold American Eagles, 1 oz. Pamp Suisse Gold Bars, and 2011 1 oz. Gold Maple Leafs.
Spot Silver prices opened this week at $29.93. Silver reached a high of $32.92 on Friday, February 18th, while this week’s low for Silver occurred on Monday, February 14th, at $29.79. Silver ended the week up $2.82 at $32.75. The most popular Silver products on APMEX.com this week were 2011 Silver American Eagles, 2011 Silver Maple Leafs, 1 oz. Silver Buffalo Rounds and 10 oz. APMEX Silver Bars.
Spot Platinum prices opened this week at $1,804.00 and ended the week up $36.40 at $1,840.40. Popular Platinum products this week included, 1 oz. Pamp Suisse Platinum Bars, 1/10 oz. Platinum American Eagles, and 1 oz. Platinum American Eagles.
Spot Palladium prices opened this week at $815.70 and ended the week up $38.90 at $854.60. Palladium investors preferred 1 oz. Pamp Suisse Palladium Bars and Palladium Canadian Maple Leafs this week at APMEX.com.
Featured Bullion Product:
Each week, APMEX will review a different bullion product for the benefit of our readers. This week, we will review the Gold American Eagle bullion coins.
Beginning on January 3, 2011, the 2011 Gold American Eagle Coins became available to the United States Mint’s authorized purchasers. An official gold bullion coin of the United States, the Gold Eagle Coin has become one of the most popular coins on the world market. Since its release by the United States Mint in 1986, the Gold Eagle has featured the same basic design. Displaying a design created by Augustus Saint Gaudens, the obverse of the Gold American Eagle depicts the figure of Lady Liberty, who holds a torch in her right hand and an olive branch in her left hand. In the background is a rendition of the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. The reverse of the Gold Eagle illustrates a nest of American eagles. A symbol of American nationalism and pride, the eagle is pictured carrying an olive branch and hovering over the nest.
Available in 1 oz, 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, and 1/10 oz denominations, the 2011 Gold American Eagle appeals to both collectors and investors alike. In addition to its beautiful design, the Gold Eagle is also a gold gem for its value. Containing 91.67% pure gold, the 22-karat Gold American Eagle Coins have a market value that usually equals the market value of their gold content. Moreover, the 2011 Gold American Eagles are eligible for precious metals IRA accounts and can potentially enhance any coin collection or investment portfolio. Having gained international popularity since its debut, the Gold American Eagle is a coin that will most likely continue to attract attention from coin collectors all over the world.