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I’m already on record as declaring 2020 as the most significant year ever for silver. Considering all that has transpired this year throughout the country and the world that may not be saying much. After all, you would have to have lived on a different planet to argue otherwise. So let me get a lot more specific and lay out the most important statistics that make this year so significant for silver. As always, I’ll rely on both hard and widely-accepted data, and will round off the numbers to make it easier to follow. I will not attempt to introduce any insider information (mainly because I’m not privy to any such information).
By far, the most important silver statistics concern the inflow of some 400 million oz of physical metal into the world’s silver ETFs and into the COMEX silver warehouses, from roughly March 16 thru the end of July. Over little more than four and a half months, 330 million oz came into the world’s silver ETFs (220 million oz into the largest silver ETF, SLV), with 70 million oz coming into the COMEX warehouses (of which 30 million oz came into the JPMorgan COMEX warehouse).
Before explaining why I believe this 400 million oz inflow of physical silver was the most remarkable development of the year, let me acknowledge that there was also a very large physical inflow of gold into the world’s gold ETFs and the COMEX gold warehouses as well. Not only was the mix different than in silver, in that the roughly 60 million oz of physical gold inflow was evenly divided between the gold ETFs and the COMEX warehouses (30 million oz each), but the total gold inflow increased the total number of ounces in the gold ETFs and COMEX warehouses by 60% to 160 million oz, whereas the 400 million oz total physical silver inflow increased total ETF and COMEX warehouse totals by “only” 36%, from 1.1 billion oz to 1.5 billion oz.
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