The Silent Rise Of Palladium
When it comes to precious metals, most of us think gold and silver. After all those two metals are the most common and almost everyone on the planet has heard of or seen both metals mostly because of jewelry and maybe old coins etc. But there is two other metals that are part of the precious metal family and those are palladium and platinum and it's palladium that we'll take a look at today.
Palladium is a chemical element with symbol Pd and it is quite rare. About 45% of all palladium mined and produced comes from Russia followed by South Africa. The bulk of the metal ends up in catalytic converters, which convert as much as 90% of the harmful gases in your car's exhaust. High end electronics use palladium also as well as some aspects of the medical field and it is also a key component of the fuel cell industry. Palladium is used in coins in Russia and in the last few decades we are seeing palladium jewelry.
Since the middle of last year, palladium has been on the rise from around $800 to a high today of $1800. That's a rise of approx. $900-$1000 in the last 18 months or so. That's like a 100% rise in the price of palladium and it seems very few are noticing. I skim the headlines of various websites daily looking for clues to anything that might be on the move in the metals and I have yet to see anything related to palladium and it's rise since the new year. In fact today November 20, while all eyes are on the Amazon or Facebook and seeing what the Fed is going to do, the price of palladium rallied about 30 bucks from $1756 up to $1786. FYI - The all time high for palladium was $1821 on October 30 and the low was $78 back in 1993.
Of course by now you are probably thinking .... Geee, how can I get into what is looking like a palladium run away here? At $1750 for an ounce plus all the fees etc. that'll work out to more than $1800 an ounce. You could rumage around the scrap yards and old auto wrecking yards looking for catalytic converters. You could also play the futures markets if your really clever or you can look at buying some palladium miners. One of big names in Palladium mining is Stillwater Mining
SWC. Stillwater has a mine in Montana. If your looking for something in Canada there's either North American Palladium PDL or Eastern Platinum ELR. There is also Implats and Anglo Platinum which both trade on over seas exchanges. The largest producer of palladium is Norilsk Nickel and they trade on the Moscow exchange.
So while your going to check on the gold price every day like I do, be sure to take a quick peek and see what palladium is doing. While your at it keep an eye open on some of the base metals also. That'll tell you which junior miners to take a look at when it comes time to investing or speculating in the junior mining market.
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