Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Hunt brothers, marked the history of the silver market

During the seventies in the U.S. the economy was characterized by a rising rate of inflation. The Hunt family, one of the richest families in Texas, decided to protect itself from the perspective of the dollar devaluation. Since U.S. laws prohibited the possession of gold, the brothers William Herbert and Nelson Bunker Hunt put all their bets of the silver and started accumulating all the silver that they can put their hands on. Back then In 1973 the silver price was $ 1.5 an ounce.
In 1979, the hoarding of metal accelerated thanks to interest from wealthy Arab traders. The prices began to rise, reaching $ 5. Thanks to the leveraging of significant quantities of futures contracts, the ascent became, in early 1980, unstoppable. The group headed by the Texans brothers now controlled 200 million ounces, an amount equal to about half of silver available in the world spot market.The prices soared to $ 52 an ounce. The huge bull run seemed successful.
But The Hunt brothers did not taken into account the reaction of the U.S. government which intervened dramatically raising margins on futures contracts on the 'COMEX' known as Commodity Exchange, Inc., a division of the NYMEX located in New York where contracts on aluminum, copper, silver and gold are treated. Thereby creating forced selling by fragile speculators who were in the bullish buying game through leverage. The same Hunt were overwhelmed.

In The COMEX traders still remember with concern the tragic day of 27 March 1980 which saw the incredible drop in the price of silver from 21.60 to $ 10.80. A drop of 50% in a few hours.

Related ETFs : Ishares Silver ETF (SLV), SPDR GOld ETF (GLD) , Powershares DB SPDR Gold ETF (GLD), Newmont Mining (NEM), Barrick Gold (ABX), GoldCorp (GG)

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