Although the Dow Jones Industrial Average had closed below the magical 10,000 plateau earlier in the week, it rallied on Friday to close at 10,150. But, most other financial news was not was not quite as rosy. The Commerce Department reported on Friday that our Gross Domestic product, the value of all the nation’s goods and services, rose at an annualized seasonally adjusted rate of 1.6% from April to June. While that was an increase, it was considerably lower than the Government’s predicted estimate of 2.4%. Many analysts believe that this is just further evidence that the recovery is losing steam.
The nervousness over the economy even has caught the eye of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. Speaking from a meeting in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Bernanke acknowledged that the pace of economic growth “recently appears somewhat less than vigorous”, and he vowed that the Central Bank would take new steps to bolster the economy if conditions worsen. Bernanke promised that the Fed might even take the unusual step of launching a major program to buy securities, among other steps to try to strengthen an economic recovery.
To make matters even worse, sales of previously occupied homes last month fell to the lowest level in 15 years. To quote the Associated Press, “It’s starting to feel like another recession!”
While news on many economic fronts is bleak, the World Gold Council issued a press release this week that offered very positive news for Gold investors. Among the salient points in the press release:
- Retail Investment will continue to be a substantial source of gold demand in Europe.
- Demand for gold in China is expected to grow considerably. It seems that the Chinese Government is trying to foster the development of a domestic gold market. That would add to the growth of gold ownership in China among Chinese consumers.
The demand for gold certainly seems to be on the rise offshore.
Spot gold prices opened this week at $1,228.30. The high during the week was on Thursday, August 26th, at $1,246.00, while the low for the week occurred on Tuesday, August 24th, at $1,211.70. Gold ended the week up $10.20 at $1,238.50. This week, 2010 1 oz. Gold American Eagles, 1 oz. Gold Maple Leafs and 1 gram Sunshine Minting Gold Bars sold in significant volumes.
Spot silver prices opened this week at $18.03. Silver reached a high of $19.34 on Friday, August 27th, while this week’s low for silver occurred on Tuesday, August 24th, at $17.74. Silver ended the week up $1.11 at $19.14. This week, silver investors concentrated their purchases at APMEX.com on 2010 Silver American Eagles, 1 oz. Silver Buffalo Rounds and 1 oz. APMEX Silver Rounds.
Spot platinum prices opened this week at $1,513.90 and ended the week up $24.00 at $1,537.90. 1 oz. Pamp Suisse Platinum Bars, 1 oz. Platinum American Eagles and 1/2 oz. Platinum American Eagles continue to be popular.
Spot palladium prices opened this week at $479.40 and ended the week up $26.70 at $506.10. 1 oz. Pamp Suisse Palladium Bars and Palladium Canadian Maple Leafs are popular palladium products with bullion investors.
Featured Bullion Product:
Each week, APMEX will review a different bullion product for the benefit of our readers. This week, we will review Austrian Silver Philharmonic coins.
The Austrian Silver Philharmonic coins are the very first silver bullion coins that are denominated in Euros. This beautiful coin is struck in pure silver which is 999.9 fine. It is issued annually and it is used as an investment product.
A sophisticated design of musical instruments representing the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as the text Wiener Philharmoniker (“Vienna Philharmonic”), can be seen on the reverse of the coin.
The subject of the obverse is the great organ in the Golden Hall in Vienna’s Musikverein, the concert hall of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. The face value in Euros, the weight, alloy purity and year of issue are also inscribed on this side of the coin.
The design of the silver coin is identical to that of the gold coin, except for its face value of 1.50 euro. The Austrian Silver Philharmonic coin is considered one of the world’s most beautiful coins.