Most Bullion Prices Sharply Up in August, US Mint Silver Coins Strong

by Bullion Prices Staff on August 31, 2013

Bullion prices were mostly higher in August with all but palladium scoring gains. In monthly breakdowns for precious metals futures in New York, advancing was gold by 6.3%, silver by 19.8% and platinum by 6.8%. Palladium slipped 0.3%.

In notably streaks, gold prices logged a fourth straight of week of gains while weekly silver prices fell for the first time in six weeks.

On Friday, which was the final trading day in August, gold prices for December delivery lost $16.80, or 1.2%, to finish at $1,396.10 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. As recently as Tuesday, gold popped above $1,420 an ounce to close at its highest price since May 14. The precious metal then dipped on Thursday and Friday and continued with the sharper loss on Friday. It ended up scoring a weekly gain, but only by 30 cents. In dollars, gold shot up $83.10 in August.

Gold advanced for a second consecutive month, "which is bullish from a momentum and technical perspective, especially as equities came under pressure this month," said Mark O’Byrne, executive director at GoldCore in Dublin. "We are now entering the seasonal sweet spot for gold as September and November are two of gold’s strongest months as seen in the data going back to 1975."

In percentage, silver prices were hit hardest Friday. Silver for December delivery plummeted 63 cents, or 2.6%, to end at $23.51 an ounce. That snatched earlier gains with silver falling 1% on the week. Also as recently as Tuesday, silver prices jumped to $24.65 an ounce to close at its highest price since April 12.

In palladium and platinum:

  • December palladium futures declined $16.25, or 2.2%, to finish at $723.85 an ounce
  • Platinum broke away from down streak on Friday with October platinum futures up $4.70, or 0.3%, to $1,527.10 an ounce

New York bullion futures prices by day and the net changes for the week are listed in the table below.

New York Futures – Bullion Prices
  Mon Tue Wed Thurs Fri Weekly Change
Silver Prices $24.01 $24.65 $24.39 $24.14 $23.51 -$0.23
Gold Prices $1,393.10 $1,420.20 $1,418.80 $1,412.90 $1,396.10 $0.30
Platinum Prices $1,544.50 $1,532.10 $1,540.10 $1,522.40 $1,527.10 -$14.50
Palladium Prices $746.05 $749.15 $748.25 $740.10 $723.85 -$27.00


August Sales of United States Mint Bullion Coins

Demand in August for United States Mint bullion products was high for silver coins but very weak for gold coins. In monthly sales:

  • American Eagle bullion silver coins advanced 3.625 million in August, which is the twelfth highest monthly total since the series debuted in 1986. The amount is exceptional as it occurred in a normally weaker summer month. It was down from July’s just over 4.46 million — the fifth ever best month. Sales for the year are above 33 million, easily on track for a record sales year with 2011 currently holding the position at just over 39.8 million. For the week, the silver coins gained 1,179,000.

  • American Eagle bullion gold coins rose 11,500 ounces in August versus the prior month’s 50,500 ounces. They went up 4,500 for the week, which was actually the best total of the month. The monthly 11,500 tally is the lowest since July 2007. You have to wonder if some of the interest instead went to the collectible reverse proof Gold Buffalo as it has sales of nearly 41,000 in August. (See reverse proof Buffalo daily sales.)

  • American Buffalo bullion gold coins gained 10,000 compared to the prior month’s 18,500. They advanced 1,500 for the week.

  • Finally, America the Beautiful 5 oz bullion silver coins gained rose 19,000 versus the 17,000 previously. Sales picked up with Monday’s release of the latest issue in the series honoring Fort McHenry. Its one-week total was 10,300 coins. The three earlier 2013-dates silver coins also gained a combined 5,300 for the week.

United States Mint bullion coin sales by day and the totals for the year through to August 23, 2013 are listed in the grid below.

Sales of United States Mint 2012 Bullion Coins
  Mon Tue Wed Thurs Fri 2013 Sales
1 oz American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 3,500 0 0 0 500 596,500
1/2 oz American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 0 0 0 0 0 48,000
1/4 oz American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 2,000 0 0 0 0 100,000
1/10 oz American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 0 0 0 0 0 455,000
1 oz American Gold Buffalo Bullion Coins 1,000 0 0 0 500 190,000
5 oz America the Beautiful Bullion Silver Coins 15,100 100 0 0 400 150,200
1 oz American Eagle Bullion Silver Coins 1,179,000 0 0 0 0 33,075,000


Bullion Prices in London

London bullion prices fell Friday but gold and silver still notched weekly gains. In dollar and percentage changes between the PM fix prices on Thursday and Friday:

  • Gold and platinum each declined $13 or 0.9%
  • Silver tumbled 47 cents, or 1.9%
  • Palladium dropped $14, or 1.9%

London fix prices for each day this week and the weekly percent and net dollar changes are shown below.

London Bullion Prices
  Mon Tue Wed Thurs Fri Weekly Change
Silver Prices $23.06 $24.29 $24.74 $24.11 $23.64 $0.58

Gold Prices $1,377.50 $1,419.25 $1,419.50 $1,407.75 $1,394.75 $17.25

Platinum Prices $1,538.00 $1,546.00 $1,528.00 $1,527.00 $1,514.00 -$24.00

Palladium Prices $752.00 $747.00 $744.00 $741.00 $727.00 -$25.00


London precious metals split in August, though only palladium declined with its loss of 0.8%. Advancing for the month were 6.1% for gold, 18.6% for silver and 5.7% for platinum.

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