What and Where Was All That Silver?

A Report on Stocks of Silver Around the World, The Silver Institute, 1992.

Thanks to Nick Laird, my little research project on the form and whereabouts of stocks of silver had a major breakthrough a little while ago which I would like to share with you at this time.  Nick has had, for quite a while now, a link on his web site (http://www.sharelynx.com/papers/CRAAGReport.php) to the summary conclusions of the Silver Institute’s publication ‘Stocks of Silver Around The World’ (SSATW), prepared for them in 1992 by Charles River Associates (CRA).

[I have now, in the evening on 31/10/12 downunder here, corrected some typos and improved some awkward or misleading phraseology in what follows.  I have also added the observation that the SSATW figues corroborate my earlier estimate that above ground silver stocks are four times as large as existing gold stocks.]

With apologies to Ansel Adams

Look closely and you can see a future Darwin Award recipient.

Screwtape responds to Brother John F

With thanks to reader, Duggo, my attention has been drawn to the video-blog of a certain Brother John F. I considered sincerely the idea of concocting a well-thought out, fact-based response to this.

But. in the end, it seems pretty obvious that the best response is to just simply post Mr BJF's video here and let our readers draw their own conclusions about the coherence of the information contained therein.

It is as unhinged as you might expect it to be.

Thank you, Brother John F. You have added much ammunition to my thesis that the silverogosphere is a fanatical, self-serving organism that seeks to deliver a perma-bullish analysis to a naive investing public.

You should be truly, truly, ashamed of yourself. Now go to your room.


Fake Fake Gold bar manufacturers story

Whilst helping a friend out with a crowd funding project, http://www.indiegogo.com/nthdeploy, I suggested he use the fake gold tungsten bars from tungsten-alloy.com as part of the "Banker reward". This is the one that is trotted out as proof China is making and exporting fake gold bars. We have mentioned them in the past as have ZH etc.
However, easier said than done when ordering. He wasted 6 emails and 5 phone calls trying to place orders for 10 Oz knock offs. They finally gave him a price of $300 plus shipping.

As part of this shameless plug stuffed with link baits please check out his geek reward prizes including his "light bulb repair kit", "CCTV anonymity kit" and his "Schroedinger's cat experiment". The project he is trying to raise funds for ain't bad either. The basic idea is to create a plugin for VMWare Virtual Center to speed up deployment of Servers even more.
Shameless plug over. Now back to the regular scheduled programming of bickering and name calling but all in the best possible taste.

Here is what is on offer for $300

Sunday pre-game, 10/28/2012

Hello friends,
First, I'd like to address the question JdA raised last week: Is silver a bubble that has already burst? She believes it will stagnate and/or trend downwards for a very long time. I disagree, mainly for the same "fundamentals" based reasons I continue to be long gold. (Certainly it's possible that gold outperforms silver in a major way going forwards, but I think there's a very heavy burden of proof on anyone who thinks gold will eventually blast past $2000, while silver won't even make another sally at its 1980 high. They're basically making the old "this time, things are different" argument.)

Aside from fundamentals, I think the technical analysis picture also argues against the idea that silver is a bubble that has burst. For one thing, the rapid ascent to $50 last April only took silver to the top of its long term price channel. There was nothing "blow-off" about it in the long term picture. Gold didn't hit the top of its post-2001 price channel until August, but apart from that has behaved very similarly. 

Database confirms Max Keiser Guest statement (updated x 2)

The biggest challenge of the BullionBars database is knowing what questions to ask of the data warehouse; at any given time there are a number of research streams in progress - but these do take time to build and mature. The biggest advantage (of having a huge chunk of data there) is the ability to run very quick random checks on anything bar-related. Today, Screwtape Files bolsters support for a particular story. Brought to my attention by Bron Suchecki this morning was a Max Keiser interview where guest Dominic Frisby makes a comment regarding Chinese gold bars (ref 20:30-21:15):

Dominic Frisby, Author/Writer
(edited for clarity) "... I had dinner about a year or two ago with the head of Gold at HSBC and one of the things that he described — and most of the world's gold goes through HSBC, at some stage — looking at the gold in his vault ... despite the fact that China is the biggest producer - he never sees bars, with Chinese stamps on them ..."


Vainly Willing the Return of the 2011 Silver Bubble

Do you remember February to May 2011?

I do. I'd previously confined my trading to stocks: oil and resources, mostly. But I wanted to branch out and thought the gold and silver charts looked good for a solid bounce back. My thesis for gold was pretty clear: a nice solid investment to hedge the rest of my portfolio against inflation. And I figured I'd take a slight gamble with silver as I imagined it would provide me with a 'volatile version' of gold. So at the beginning of February 2011 I went in at 75% gold, and 25% silver.

Boy, did us newbie silver investors get lucky! The charts had pointed to a good rise in silver, but we hadn't imagined such a move in our wildest dreams. By the end of the month it had gone from $26 to $34, and I was scaling out of gold and in to silver. With this metal swap, the profits just kept rising. By the end of April, it had all gone stupid, and it was obvious to anyone with two neurons to rub together that we were in the grip of a mania. I got out at around $45 and never regretted the decision. A few days later silver started its plunge from $50 to (eventually) $26, and has barely recovered to this day (currently at $31 and change).

What I did regret, however, was what happened to everyone who had not ejected. It could easily have been me too, had I had a bit less trading experience and a bit less fear (yes, sharp moves higher always scare the absolute bejesus out of me, more so than the plunges - fact). And this burned my curiosity. What had actually taken place? How had such a mania developed? And why didn't most retail silver investors get out? They were still buying all the way up to $49, the poor bastards.

So I started to look more deeply into the 2011 Silver Bubble, and events since, and was rather shocked by what I found.

How to market your website or DIY SEO

How to market your website /  be your own SEO. 
I am working on a project right now that demands high profile publicity and being the sort of guy who doesn't trust the local mechanics to fix my car I don't trust an SEO to give his all.  So I decided to educate myself.  I watched numerous videos. Strike that, I tried to watch numerous videos and didn't find one that was in any way useful. Too much filler and not enough facts for my tastes. I don't have the patience to watch an hour to get one or two nuggets of information. Time to try the old fashioned reading thing. I looked at numerous forums and all I found for the most part was spam from one guru or another looking to sell me more DVD's. Seriously, the Algorithm’s the search engines use are not so complex that they require 10 DVD's.  Finally stumbled across a couple of concise and to the point books which I am going to boil down into a couple of essays. I will be using this website as an example of what not to do http://mrfaeces.wix.com/shitewebsite - !home/mainPage

Sunday pre-game, 10/21

Hello friends -

Re: gold: everything is pointing to a drop to at least $1690 (e.g., see my two $GOLD charts below). I don't think it will go below that, but I'll be buying all the way down to $1650 if it happens.

Beyond that, things could get ugly. There would probably be a quick move down to $1600, after which another test of the bottom of the year-long trading range at $1525 might beckon. But again, I'm not seeing that happening. The fundamentals are too strong. I'm betting on a new all-time high sometime next spring (but probably not before that).

Apple Frettings

This is a little off the beaten path from our usual subject matter but it was an annoying problem for me that I resolved and thought I would share. After upgrading my iPhone 4s to the latest operating system iOS6 I noticed the battery was draining pretty rapidly. Searching around the inter tubes had the usual amount of recommendations of reloading the OS from scratch, hard resets, soft resets, bring it to the Apple store etc etc. They are like mall rats at the Apple forums. They lurk around waiting for questions on any subject and spring into action with their three pearls of wisdom. Begone to your basement forum rats or go tend your imaginary corn on Farmville.

I was used to a dead battery if I left Skype up and running on it by accident but this was the equivalent of having two copies of Skype running. 3 to 4 hours of the phone just sitting there and the battery was dead. Something was running and screwing it up and I needed to know.

Sunday pre-game, 10/14

Good evening, friends. I've been too busy to trade lately, but I have some charts for you nonetheless. My guess is an all-time high in gold is a few months away, based (among other reasons) on the chart below.
The red bar marks the time to the low point of the correction. The red+green together represent how long it took for a new all-time high after the biggest correction thus far (2008).

Gold as Greed

It's tough for people where I live. I don't mean Glaswegian council estate or LA 'Project' tough. I mean proper tough.

The child malnutrition rate (moderate and severe) here is at 27%, literacy at 47 and 31% (male and female, respectively), and 51% of the population is below the international poverty line of $1.25 per day. A recent rebellion, followed quickly by a coup d'etat and a saturation of the north by Islamist terrorists, has exacerbated this poverty-stricken country's existing problems, and created a new crisis of 400,000 refugees and internally displaced people. Now all the people have to look forward to is war and international military intervention.

Corruption, an eroding terrain, and the hangover from decades of colonial rule, have conspired to make this country the 12th poorest in the world.

This is perhaps all the more surprising given that this nation is the third biggest producer of gold in Africa.

The Return of the Benton

So, Wynter Benton is back for what we're calling 'Round 3'. Last month when they resurfaced, I resisted writing about it but now they're stepping up the juice by advertising a demonstration of their 'power'. Their latest price call for silver trading above $50/oz by 1st 31st December 2012 didn't generate the spark and interest they wanted (duh), so I guess this is all about trying to restore lost credibility - after all the 'Benton Guarantee' turned out to be as much value as trying to redeem a medical insurance claim. I'm not even being mean-spirited! In their own words: "if the paper price of silver is ever below $36 again, we will bust the Comex link" and ''Our group GUARANTEES that silver will trade above $45 by November 30, 2011. No caveats, no excuses link''. They are planning a demo starting next Tuesday, going on for about a week link.

PM Revue

Hello friends. Not a whole lot to say here. I continue to be very bullish, but I've stopped adding to my core position for now, as we might get a nice dip here to exploit. 

Trading-wise, however, I've been buying red days and selling the bigger green days, and I'll continue to do that until it looks like we're emphatically breaking out in one direction or another.  

It can go either way, but the resistance of the blue trend channel since my last post hasn't been encouraging: