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Kelly
3rd September 2008, 14:33
In a lot of ways, what JesterJay has been saying is proving true. Spot price may be what the media preaches to the masses but silver is really selling much higher than spot price on E-bay and through other non-industry standard dealers. I checked E-bay sales yesterday and nothing was selling for $13 an ounce.

Furthermore, when silver was up around $20 most sterling and fine silver jewelry product manufacturers raised their prices and NOBODY HAS DROPPED THEM SINCE! NOBODY! Right now, in the Jewelry industry silver is going for between $.82 to $1.25 a gram! That's $23.25-$35.44 an ounce! I've even seen sterling wire offered at a couple of wholesale houses for as high as $45 an ounce! (But only very stupid people buy silver wire at that price. I'm paying $17-$18 and ounce for wire right now, but I know where to find it.)

The paper traders (bank hedge funds) are trying to make silver and gold look worthless to the world's population which ALWAYS looks to silver and gold as safe havens in a bad economy. Unfortunately, the media has done an excellent job of pointing out that both precious metals have plummeted.

But what they are not telling people is that silver is NOT plummeting on E-bay and it is NOT plummeting in the Jewelry industry. The silver jewelry manufacturing industry (beads and findings) is primarily based in Indonesia and Thailand, and trust me those guys are NOT paying any attention to spot prices. All the manufacturers have obviously reached some sort of closed agreement that maintains that the true value of silver is $20 an ounce.

It sure looks to me that if you own silver on paper it is rapidly becoming worthless. (But we all knew that anyway, didn't we?)

Bouillon and coins even look iffy unless you are going to sell on e-bay. Standard coin shops and bouillon dealers are still pretty much relying on spot prices when you sell, and when you go to buy some are still claiming a shortage.

BUT in the sterling and fine silver jewelry market, for the most part you can't even tell that spot has dropped. The jewelry industry is truly holding their silver prices at what they were when spot was at $20 and from the looks of things, they don't intend to budge!

Right now the value of my bouillon holdings is utterly depressing but my boxes of silver beads are still shining. The value of sterling and fine silver jewelry related items has not dropped a single dime regardless of what has happened to spot.

The other thing that I wonder about is who in the hell can afford to mine silver and sell it when spot prices are this low? It takes a lot of energy, gasoline and machinery to mine silver and gold and mining costs (like everything else) have surely skyrocketed too.

Sooner or later I hope the mines just get wise and slow way, way down. Because when they do, I suspect this whole thing is going to turn around and bite the paper traders on the ass!

COMEX isn't listening to our complaints about market manipulation. But then maybe we should use our heads and write letters in mass to the CEOs of the mining companies instead! My guess is they are as pissed off at the paper traders and shorts as we are. After all, it can't be very profitable for the mine owners to sell silver at this price.

I know what I'd do if I owned a silver mine. I'd lay a few workers off and engineer a slow down and I'd tell every other mining company to do the same thing…

Argentum
3rd September 2008, 14:53
Much of the silver from mines comes as a by-product of the primary ore they are mining. Many threads and articles have discussed this as it applies to silver prices.

Kelly
3rd September 2008, 15:34
It's true that most of the silver mined today is a by-product of nickle and zinc mining, but in the mining industry, the quantity of silver they recover is very important to mining profits. Zinc and nickle sell for almost nothing. The mines might only recover one ounce of silver to every two pounds of nickle, but when spot was at $20 for silver, the money they made from the silver would have surpassed the money they made from the nickle.

There would be lots of silver being mined today were it not for the environmentalists claiming that all mining messes with the planet. Curiously enough, (or perhaps it's not curious at all) I discovered in the 1980s that the money funding certain big environmental movements was coming directly from the same banking families that are today hell bent on manipulating the price of silver and gold down to nothing again...

Why am I not surprised?

nuslvrkwen
3rd September 2008, 15:58
Kelly -

What to you think about regional manufacture & sales of bullion and jewelry made items. Bullion minted from independants to be sold on the open market like eBay and craigslist? Most of the corporate producers look at the physical market like it's populated by 'little people' or something. Metalworx and other metalworkers in this country and others who post to this forum can make more bullion available and stabilize the prices it sells for. NO, I already understand it would never trade at spot. But the amounts people are willing to pay for physical bullion as a hedge should be going into a business model? that would make it so PMs could always be manufactured & in the market place. AND the biggest point of doing this at all; would be that it would create a daily physical metals market price that wouldn't get used by the futures sellers!! Then we could have daily moving averages and statistics that reflected physical metal movement and prices. Merging the price with futures gave the PTB the ability to devalue PMs by associating them with other futures instruments.

We accept the fact there's always going to be people not willing to deal with coin dealers or jewelry supply houses to get PMs. But we also know the value of silver and gold is much higher than the spot price is. The spot price is as low as it is becuase it's considered a PAPER PRICE. Not physical.

Kelly
3rd September 2008, 16:37
Well, I for one would be TOTALLY in support of any stabalized system for hard silver products versus paper and futures' trades. After all, they are actually two entirely different things.

I want to see the physical market stabilized and some sort of system in place that we can count on for a change. I want to know what my real silver is actually worth and right now there is nothing about the spot price of paper silver that is even vaguely establishing a credible price for the real thing.

It'd be nice to be able to accurately judge what one's holdings were actually worth and right now I don't think any of us can realistically do that. We all know what the fundamentals of silver are. We all know it is a diminishing world asset and an extremely important one at that.

Apparently there are a lot of people in the world today who have decided the spot price is an illusion. Everybody who buys silver on ebay knows what the spot price is. Every jeweler willing to pay 82 cents a gram knows what spot price is. So what? It doesn't matter what the spot price is to people in the Jewelry industry. If we can't buy what we need at spot price and haven't been able to for some time now, then obviously 30% of the silver market is ALREADY establishing a different price for silver on a world-wide scale.

It looks to me like in the last year or so the futures' Market is loosing it's ability to control the physical silver market. The people who rely on it the most are the ones who are holding paper. Those of us who hold the real thing seem to be establishing a completely different market norm.

So actually we are already in the process of creating a seperate market, and now we just need to work on stabiling what is already in the works.

Hard silver is 30% Jewelry Industry, 30% coins and investment bouilion, and 40% commercial industry. What does paper have to do with any of it?

nuslvrkwen
3rd September 2008, 18:23
It's amazing thinking about what people will pay for silver jewelry selling on the open market regularly. I'm considering eBay and Craigslist the open market. What you are telling me about pricing is showing me you are right! The buying public is ALREADY working on a different market price then what's printed online and in any paper that prints spot price.

It's still looking like regional small or cooperative production of bullion, rounds, and even resale of things like wire, shot, and finished beads would help stabilize prices. Price is still determined by who pays and how much they agree to pay. The regional cooperative producer wants to have consistent quality marks and ID marks to build credibility in what these things are - regionally produced physical PM investment instruments. :D

These prices and trades need to be online and updated regularly so others will FIND them. TPB will NOT want to know about this - it impacts what would come to them in terms of loan payments, paper trades, and debt swaps. I'd just love to have this up and running, just so all of us would have a better idea of the value of our holdings. For our own information. I know running it will eventually make the PTB look very bad.

Kelly
3rd September 2008, 19:17
Although I've been buying (and selling) silver in one form or another for about 25 years, the last year and a half, things have really changed. For instance, in May of 2007 I bought a couple of hundred ounces of bouilion when spot was at $13.87. At the same time, I also invested in sterling wire, beads and findings for Jewelry and at that time was paying around 62 cents a gram, and 5 cents less per gram weight on quantity orders over $1000.

But today spot just dropped to $12.89 and I'm paying 82 cents per gram, so the jewelry market is definately holding its own against spot.

But it really isn't "amazing" what people will pay for good silver jewelry; it's actually a very smart investment. Not only is good silver jewelry holding its value well above bouilion, if it's well made and the designer builds a reputation for doing good work, that silver also holds value as a highly desirable "collectible" that will increase in price over the years. There are, for instance, silver pieces that were made in Africa probably no more than 80 years ago with maybe around 2 ozs of silver in the piece and it's not unusual to see it sell for $400! Regardless of it's value as a "collectible," any piece of silver jewelry that contains a significant amount of silver will hold its value regardless of what the market manipulators do in the future's market.

Silver jewelry has not dropped in price and frankly, I don't think it will. All designers base their prices not on what they paid for the bead or finding, but what it will cost them to replace those items so they can continue building a sellable product. To stay in business, most self-representing artists will price their handmade jewelry about three times the cost of the material. But today most retail stores will charge around five times their cost and then hold several 50% off sales a year.

Women think of silver differently than men do. Men generally buy coins or boullion and worry about where to hide it but when a woman invests in silver, she'll wear it proudly on her wrist!

Any way you look at it, the all silver jewelry you buy your girlfriend, wife or daughter WILL appreciate over time, and believe me, WHEN silver finally does "go to the moon" you can count on the fact that good silver jewelry will appreciate more in value than bouillion or coins will.

As an investment, silver jewelry should contain a significant amount of silver. A lot of designers will say "sterling silver and gemstones" but when you look at the piece, there is actually very little silver in it; nothing but a few small spacers and bead caps and a small sterling clasp; there will really be no silver weight in the piece at all and though the piece may be pretty as an adornment, as a silver investment, it's probably not a good deal.

In my view, Silver jewelry is a very good investment if there is a significant weight in silver AND the piece is well designed. Most of the weighty pieces will be bracelets because women don't like to wear anything to heavy around their necks.

It's not amazing at all what people will pay for Jewelry. Women have been wearing jewelry since Eve...and right now there is one hell of a lot more upward potential in silver jewelry than there is gold.

Like I said, my bouillon has taken a nose dive thanks to the shorts. But my jewelry pieces? They've turned out to be the better investment.

Argentum
3rd September 2008, 20:50
Interesting comments on different aspects of silver. I was not going to mention this, but, well, the wife and I have taken to liking silver tea sets and the like. The solid kind, not plate. I've gotten her a few nice small items, one is a crystal perfume bottle with silver overlaid. Another is a maple syrup pitcher ((small)). One book that just blows me away when I got it for a gift for her was 'Modernism in American Sliver' from the Dallas Museum of Art by Jewel Stern. Some outstanding and CRAZY stuff.

Now I just need to figure out how to custom my Harley with silver, not chrome!!!

strongman shelford
3rd September 2008, 21:03
i Must Congratulate Jesterjay For Opening My Eyes To Ebay Prices.

Kelly
3rd September 2008, 23:16
Argentum - And aren't those old teapots just beautiful? When all we do is think about the fundamentals of silver, the spot price and where in the hell to hide our coins and bouillon, I think we all tend to forget the first and primary reason that silver began to be considered precious in the first place! And it's because it is BEAUTIFUL.

When I stopped posting for a while it was because I was too focused on this forum and I needed to get to work and make some new jewelry for the Xmas season coming up. And it was also because I was soooooo ticked off about all the manipulation in the silver market, I could hardly stand it any more.

But when I stopped focusing on my bullion and got into working with my silver, I fell in love with the stuff all over again. It's a lovely, lovely metal for a craftsperson to work in. Most of us could never afford to work in gold and the gold plated stuff doesn't really hold its value.

But silver? It's a wonderful medium. I worked until my wrists were swollen and my fingers even bled, but I turned out some absolutely GORGEOUS stuff, all just oozing with lots and lots of silver. In some pieces I also used some very old and very expensive trade beads; beads that now sell for $30 -$40 each (yes a single bead!) on e-bay, and very, very collectible old silver foiled beads made by Czech family and hidden away from Hitler when the Nazis invaded in WWII. The beads were found 60 years later by a grandson who had inherited his grandparent's old home in Czechoslovakia. When he went to remodel it and pulled off the old wooden boards in the attic, there was this wonderful stash of old silvered beads that they had completely forgotten about. Those beads escaped the Nazis who utterly plundered most of that country. I feel honored to have some of them.

Really. Just working with the silver again, coiling it and hammering, bending and twisting it, I fell in love with the stuff all over again.

Screw the Futures Market. I honestly love the look and feel of silver...

Argentum
4th September 2008, 04:44
Would be interested in seeing some of your work.....

nuslvrkwen
4th September 2008, 13:52
Kelly!!

You are inspiring me so much! All of you know I've had many jobs. I made jewelry during the '70s & '80s. Even selling my work in the UK and Germany. I NEVER ONCE considered the pieces I was making in SILVER could be viewed as an investment. I thought collecting was how they'd be considered as an investment.

I still believe the value of silver is NOT in it's spot price, but in the piece it's made from! I'm looking at the per gram price of wearable art and believing people especially women would view that as a means of thinking about wearable art as an investment! Kelly you have to do a thread on this.

pkrebaum
4th September 2008, 14:21
In India they have "investment necklaces", which are essentially gold bars mounted and hung on a chain. I've seen the rectangular bar mounts/holders (with a loop at the top for the chain) on ebay and bullion sites.
You could do something similar with 1 to 10 Oz. Silver bars. Think something "king Tut-ish" with say 4 bars hanging down vertically in the center, flanked by vertical strings of 3, 2, and 1 bars on each side.... and if someone tries to steal it you could always clobber them with it.....

JesterJay
4th September 2008, 17:32
Kelly said MY name.
My knees are wobbly, I must sit down. Oh, I am sitting. I am so choked up, I don't know which way is down.
Seriously, Spot is NOT!
JesterJay



In a lot of ways, what JesterJay has been saying is proving true. Spot price may be what the media preaches to the masses but silver is really selling much higher than spot price on E-bay and through other non-industry standard dealers. I checked E-bay sales yesterday and nothing was selling for $13 an ounce.

JESTERJAY's NOTE:
About 50 or 60 thousand word's of Kelly's deleted here to help reduce my headache.


nuslvrkwen
4th September 2008, 17:49
In India they have "investment necklaces", which are essentially gold bars mounted and hung on a chain. I've seen the rectangular bar mounts/holders (with a loop at the top for the chain) on ebay and bullion sites.
You could do something similar with 1 to 10 Oz. Silver bars. Think something "king Tut-ish" with say 4 bars hanging down vertically in the center, flanked by vertical strings of 3, 2, and 1 bars on each side.... and if someone tries to steal it you could always clobber them with it.....

I don't know if I'd be wearing this Pkrebaum... all that metal clanking around. It would probably sell in New York, & LA ... anyplace gangstas want to shop...

I still have sterling beads and findings. Never considered them as part of my PM investment at all... So I actually have more holdings than I first considered. Last birthday I bought something like 8 pennyweights (dwt) of rose and yellow gold wire. I made a pair of earrings and a bracelet out of it. They have gemstones too, but all the metal and findings are gold. For a while there my 'present to myself' grew in value when I compared it's spot price with bullion I was buying. Even now all the gains made in gold and silver have gone away, the jewelry's still fun to wear...

TODAY's market drop is the 4th worst this year. Silver dropped below $13 today. No way anyone invested in wire and sheet would be worried about it. Bullion and coins, yeah the value is down.

Trvlr45
5th September 2008, 12:50
Argentum - And aren't those old teapots just beautiful? When all we do is think about the fundamentals of silver, the spot price and where in the hell to hide our coins and bouillon, I think we all tend to forget the first and primary reason that silver began to be considered precious in the first place! And it's because it is BEAUTIFUL.

When I stopped posting for a while it was because I was too focused on this forum and I needed to get to work and make some new jewelry for the Xmas season coming up. And it was also because I was soooooo ticked off about all the manipulation in the silver market, I could hardly stand it any more.

But when I stopped focusing on my bullion and got into working with my silver, I fell in love with the stuff all over again. It's a lovely, lovely metal for a craftsperson to work in. Most of us could never afford to work in gold and the gold plated stuff doesn't really hold its value.

But silver? It's a wonderful medium. I worked until my wrists were swollen and my fingers even bled, but I turned out some absolutely GORGEOUS stuff, all just oozing with lots and lots of silver. In some pieces I also used some very old and very expensive trade beads; beads that now sell for $30 -$40 each (yes a single bead!) on e-bay, and very, very collectible old silver foiled beads made by Czech family and hidden away from Hitler when the Nazis invaded in WWII. The beads were found 60 years later by a grandson who had inherited his grandparent's old home in Czechoslovakia. When he went to remodel it and pulled off the old wooden boards in the attic, there was this wonderful stash of old silvered beads that they had completely forgotten about. Those beads escaped the Nazis who utterly plundered most of that country. I feel honored to have some of them.

Really. Just working with the silver again, coiling it and hammering, bending and twisting it, I fell in love with the stuff all over again.

Screw the Futures Market. I honestly love the look and feel of silver...

Kelly,

You are TRULY the real McCoy of silver on this forum. I have to say I like just about anything made out of metal even if it isn't silver.