Amidst the roaring investment demand for precious metals like silver and gold, it can be easy to forget that another, significant portion of the market relies on these metals for manufacturing and consumer goods. India, the world's largest consumer of gold and one of the largest of silver, buys thousands of tons each year for making jewelry.
That nation, however, appears to be on track to buy less gold – sales are projected to expand at the slowest pace in five years for the year beginning on June 30, 2010, and globally, consumption of gold jewelry will fall by 15 percent this year.
Silver, a metal more closely tied to the rise and fall of industrial activity and equities, gained 1.56 percent to trade at $20.155 per troy ounce, as stock indexes around the world rose. Gold lost 30 cents to trade at $1,246.20 per troy ounce.
"An increase in risk appetite offered a subtle nudge to the downside for metals," Tom Pawlicki, an analyst in Chicago, told Bloomberg News.
Palladium and platinum, futures – both precious metals with a mixture of investment and industrial demand – gained as well.
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