Brexit has proven to be the icing on the cake for an already-stellar year in precious metals. With June now over, the top two metals were the best-performing assets for the month.
Gold finished the first half of the year with a 25% gain and is trading at more than two-year highs. The first six months of 2016 represent golds best first-half annual performance since at least 1980. Meanwhile, silver logged a 33% increase. What other milestones and even records have been set since the United Kingdom voted in favor of leaving the European Union?
- Silver has surged above $19: While golds 8.8% advance in June (its biggest monthly increase since February) was impressive, silver managed to outperform the yellow metal by breaking the $19 level for the first time since September 2014 in its best weekly move since August 2013 (with an 8% advance that saw it touch $19.40). The white metal returned a blistering 17% in June.
- Top gold ETF breaks all-time record: The SPDR Gold Shares exchange-trade fund, the worlds largestbullion-linkedETF, experienced its biggest inflows ever in the first half of the year. The more than $12 billion invested so far in 2016 is greater than what the fund gained in its biggest year ever, 2009. The GLD is attracting more capital now than 6,000 other ETFs tracked by Bloomberg and has added more than 300 metric tons for its highest level since at least July 2013. Meanwhile, holdings in all gold-backed ETFs tracked by Bloomberg have grown by 34% to 1,952 tons as of June 30.
- Trading volumes the best in 40 years: Futures volumes on the CME have never been higher in the first half of any other year. More than 28 million contracts were traded in the first six months of 2016.
- U.S. Mint coin sales higher than last year: The six-month rolling averages of the U.S. Mints gold and silver sales are both higher than a year ago, with $65 million spend on the yellow metal and $85 million invested in silver, according to a Convergex analysis. Of course, silver American Eagle sales are notably on course to smash last years all-time record of 47 million ounces, with 26.25 million already purchased. Gold American Eagle sales are almost 84% higher than where they were at this time last year, while gold Buffalo sales are nearly 17% greater than at the same time in 2015.
- Gold priced in the British pound retakes key level: Not only has gold priced in the U.S. dollar definitively broken through the $1,300 barrier, but gold denominated in sterling has rallied back above 1,000 pounds now that the Bank of England is vowing to cut rates and add billions worth of monetary accommodation to the financial system to ease post-Brexit stressors. UK investors have now seen pound-priced gold enjoy its best week since April 2013 and its best month since August 1982. Gold priced in the pound has returned an astounding 40% since the start of the year. Meanwhile, gold priced in the euro also had a breakout week.
With the smoke only just beginning to clear from the Brexit referendums aftermath, look for gold and silver potentially to reach more new milestones as 2016 unfolds.