June 18, 2008

Ted Butler: A hidden silver default?

Silver market analyst Ted Butler reports evidence that the Barclays silver exchanged-traded fund on the American Stock Exchange (SLV) is being short-sold and naked-short-sold in what may be a huge default in the metal. Butler estimates the default at between 25 million and 50 million ounces.
His new commentary is headlined "A Hidden Silver Default?" and you can find it at GoldSeek's companion site, SilverSeek, HERE

June 8, 2008

U.S. Mint says its silver supply will be cut in half

June 6, 2008


FROM: Cathy Laperle
Team Lead, Bullion Program
United States Mint

SUBJECT: American Eagle Silver Bullion Coin Update

The United States Mint has been informed by its silver blank vendors that the volume of blanks they will be shipping to us in the coming weeks will be significantly reduced.

Specifically, the quantities they will ship to us during the week of June 9 are expected to be less than half the quantities they shipped to us during the week of June 2. Our vendors, however, expect to be able to make incremental increases in supplies each week thereafter. In the mean time, the significant reduction in the number of blanks they supply to us will, of course, directly affect the quantity of coins we can make available for allocation to our Authorized Purchasers.

Accordingly, the United States Mint will continue allocating American Eagle Silver Bullion Coins per the process initiated on April 21, 2008.

As you know, in the first six months of 2008 production, the United States Mint produced more American Eagle Silver Bullion Coins (10.07 million) than we did during the entire 12-month period of 2007 (9.03 million). The United States Mint stands ready to continue this high level of production as additional blanks become available from our suppliers.

The United States Mint is making every effort to increase its acquisition of silver bullion blanks that meet the specifications and requirements of the law. In our efforts to meet unprecedented demand, the United States Mint is again preparing a request for proposals for additional silver blank suppliers. Additionally, we are not using incoming supplies of silver blanks to produce numismatic versions of these coins (American Eagle Silver Proof and Uncirculated Coins); all incoming inventory is being used solely for silver bullion coins during this reduced supply period.

Thank you for your patience and your continued support of the United States Mint American Eagle Silver Bullion Coin Program.

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June 6, 2008

Mint replies to Silver Institute's complaint about shortage of coins

From Numismatic News, Iola, Wisconsin
Thursday, June 5, 2008

The ongoing supply shortage of 2008 silver American Eagles got the attention of the Silver Institute on May 29 when its executive director, Michael DiRienzo, wrote a letter to Mint Director Ed Moy asking that steps be taken to increase the number being struck.

"It's clear that the Mint misjudged the strength of the current silver market, and we are encouraging the Mint to take immediate steps to increase its production of these popular investment coins and plan accordingly for the balance of 2008 and for 2009," DiRienzo wrote.

The Mint issued a statement in response:

"Since the introduction of the 2008 American Eagle Silver Bullion Coin Program, the United States Mint has issued a record number of coins (about 9.65 million), as demand for them has increased exponentially. That number is almost as high as the United States Mint's production for the entire year of 2007 (about 9.8 million).

"By law, the United States Mint's American Eagle silver bullion coins must meet exacting specifications and must be composed of newly mined silver acquired from domestic sources. The United States Mint will continue to make every effort to increase its acquisition of silver bullion blanks that meet these specifications and requirements to address continuing high demand in the silver bullion coin market."

The Silver Institute notes that over 165 million silver American Eagles have been produced since they were introduced in 1986.

Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the Silver Institute is a nonprofit international silver industry association founded in 1971.

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