Plans and Consequences
You are probably already getting into the holiday spirit, perhaps you are even under a little stress. But the turn of the year will soon be here – an occasion to review the past year and make plans for the new one. Many people are doing just that – and their behavior is creating the strongest seasonal rally in the precious metals markets.
Anonymous industrial stackers showing off their freshly purchased silver hoard. [PT]
Silver is seasonally cheap in mid December
First let us look at the seasonal chart of silver. The chart shows the average moves in silver prices in the course of a calendar year over the past 69 years. The horizontal axis shows the time of the year, the vertical axis depicts price information.
With the help of this chart, seasonal trends can be identified at a glance. Note: the seasonal pattern does not end at the turn of the year, but actually continues at the beginning of the year (i.e., on the left hand side of the chart).
Silver price, seasonal pattern over the past 69 years. Silver prices typically rise very strongly until the end of February
As the chart illustrates, on average silver tends to post the by far strongest price gains early in the year until peaking close to the end of February. This rapid advance actually begins in mid December (blue arrow). Thereafter the price typically retreats again.
Thus silver makes a move in excess of its total annual seasonal gain over the coming two months!
The seasonal rally is caused by fundamental drivers
The strong seasonal advance is very likely driven by purchases from the manufacturing industry. Many industrial silver processors/users place the bulk of their purchase orders at the beginning of the new financial year once annual planning has been completed and new orders can be booked.
If you purchase silver ahead of this phase – to be precise, in mid December – you will buy at a fairly reasonable price from a seasonal perspective and stand to benefit from the strong seasonal rally.
Platinum prices offer a seasonally favorable entry in mid December as well
But what is the situation with other precious metals? Next I will show you the typical seasonal pattern of platinum over the past 32 years.
Platinum price, seasonal pattern over the past 32 years.
Platinum also tends to rally strongly starting in mid December
As the chart shows, platinum exhibits a very similar seasonal pattern. Just as silver, it rises strongly from mid December almost to the end of February.
Contrary to silver, platinum displays a further seasonal advance in April, but subsequently these gains tend to be retraced almost in their entirety.
In light of the fact that similar to silver, the seasonal rally in platinum is associated with the turn of the year, it is probably attributable to the same fundamental reason: purchases related to the new financial year.
Gold, silver, platinum: all the same?
You may now think that the seasonal trends of gold look similar. After all, there is a strong positive correlation between silver and gold prices. Or could it be different, given that the fundamental drivers moving gold prices are not the same?
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If you want to find out about the seasonal patterns of gold, or those of your favorite stocks, or if you want to learn about optimal timing of entry and exit points with seasonal data, I recommend visiting www.app.seasonax.com – which can be used free of charge for gold and other important instruments. If you are an institutional investor, call up the Seasonax app at Bloomberg or Thomson-Reuters Eikon.