Silver demand shoots to highest since 2015, Silver Institute says

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    LONDON, Nov 17 (Businesshala) - Global silver demand will rise to
1.029 billion ounces this year, up 15% from 2020 and exceeding a
billion ounces for the first time since 2015, the Silver
Institute said in a report on Wednesday. 
    The prediction is a slight downgrade from April, when the
institute forecast demand for 2021 at 1.033 billion ounces.

    The coronavirus sharply reduced use of silver by
manufacturers and jewellers but increased demand from investors
who wanted a safe asset to ride out economic turbulence.  
    This year, with most economies out of lockdowns, demand has
risen across the board - from manufacturers of goods including
solar panels and electronics to jewellers, makers of silverware
and investors in silver bars and coins, the institute said. 
    It predicted the silver market would be undersupplied by 7
million ounces in 2021, the first deficit since 2015. 
    Those numbers exclude exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that
store silver for investors, since these funds hold wholesale
silver bars without remaking them as other users of silver do. 
    The institute, whose figures are prepared by consultants
Metals Focus, said it expected ETF to stockpile less than last
year but far more than was typical before the pandemic. 
    Silver currently trades around $25 an ounce, up from
around $16-17 in 2015-19 but down from a high of $30.03 reached
in February. 
    Below are numbers for 2021 and comparisons. 
    
    SILVER SUPPLY AND DEMAND (million ounces)    
                                  2021(f)      2020   % change
  SUPPLY                                                      
  Mine Production                     829       780         6%
  Recycling                           192       182         5%
  TOTAL SUPPLY                      1,022       972         5%
                                                              
  DEMAND                                                      
  Industrial                          524       487         8%
  Photography                          29        28         4%
  Jewellery                           173       146        18%
  Silverware                           40        32        25%
  Net Physical Investment             263       199        32%
  TOTAL DEMAND                      1,029       892        15%
                                                              
 Market Balance                        -7        80      -109%
                                                              
 Net Investment in ETPs/ETFs          150       331       -55%
                                                              
 Market Balance less ETPs/ETFs       -157      -251       -37%
                                                              
 Silver Price $/oz                  25.40     20.55        24%
 
    Source: Silver Institute, Metals Focus
    
    

 (Reporting by Peter Hobson; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)
  
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