Sliding gold coin sales show that retail demand for the actual metal is clearly fading, but dealers and analysts say it is not because investors are less concerned about the financial turmoil around the globe. There's just not the same fervor for the precious metal as in recent years.
"This is the first time in our economic history that we have a situation where there is such tremendous economic uncertainty and global fear when gold has not skyrocketed in tandem," said gold dealer Lee Rosenbloom, owner of Plaza 57 Appraisals and Plaza Collectibles in New York.
COMEX gold futures have declined 9.5 percent, nearly $200, from the 2012 peak near $1,800 an ounce, and prices over the past 12 months are basically flat. As for the physical metal, declining sales in U.S. gold coins — a real-time proxy for retail investment demand — along with a somewhat stagnant gold futures price indicate the frenzy over gold has calmed, but it's certainly not been crushed.
Sales of gold coins at the U.S. Mint plunged to about 30,000 for one-ounce gold coins in July — that's less than half the number sold in the same month last year and more than six times fewer than at the peak of the financial crisis in 2008.Page 1 of 3 | Next Page