Silver Seizes the Spotlight Following Reddit Day-Trader Frenzy
Silver grain at a refinery in Australia. (Photographer: David Gray/Bloomberg)

Silver Seizes the Spotlight Following Reddit Day-Trader Frenzy

A silver frenzy calmed on Friday as investors weigh whether a push by Reddit posters to create a short squeeze has legs.

The entire market -- from miners’ shares to exchange-traded funds and even the physical metal -- has emerged as one of the latest targets of the r/wallstreetbets board now famous for fueling a short squeeze in Gamestop Corp. that sent its market value soaring. Posts encouraged people to pile into IShares Silver Trust, the largest silver exchange-traded fund, and one described it as “THE BIGGEST SHORT SQUEEZE IN THE WORLD”.

Silver Seizes the Spotlight Following Reddit Day-Trader Frenzy

“It is true that the combined efforts of those on the Reddit forums can dramatically influence the price of individual stocks, but if you compare the size of the entire silver market to the market cap of the individual companies that forums have recently targeted, we don’t see this as having potential to significantly move silver into a short squeeze scenario,” said John Feeney, business development manager at Guardian Vaults, a Sydney-based dealer.

“Silver’s market cap is too large and those on the forums typically want to see quick gains, so I wouldn’t read into it too much,” he said.

More on the silver market’s volatile Thursday
  • Spot silver jumped as much as 6.8%, the most since August
  • Options volume in IShares Silver Trust climbed to a record
  • First Majestic Silver Corp., cited on Reddit as a short-squeeze target, gained more than 20%
  • Silver Options Market Volume Surges on Reddit-Fueled Swings
  • Spot Silver Bounces Off Key Average in Day-Trader Surge: Chart

Spot silver was 1% lower at $26.2317 an ounce by 9:50 a.m. in Singapore on Friday, heading for a monthly loss.

Gold, which was largely spared from Thursday’s trading frenzy, was little changed at $1,843.51 an ounce. Prices are heading for their biggest January decline in a decade as the dollar strengthened after the Federal Reserve kept its monetary policy unchanged without promising any more aid.

“Gold has tentatively lost its mojo as U.S. stocks resume their climb higher and as ‘little sister’ silver gets an endorsement from the Reddit army of traders,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda Corp. “Gold has weathered waning demand as institutional investors focus more efforts on the recent volatility that stems from the retail traders who are trading heavily shorted stocks and now silver. Gold needs to recapture and hold the $1,850 level otherwise bearish momentum could trigger a tentative plunge below $1,800.”

In other markets, palladium and platinum were steady. Asian stocks followed their U.S. peers higher. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index rose 0.1% and is heading for its first monthly gain since September.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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