In the first three months of the year, Hong Kong received half of total U.S. gold exports. This was an interesting change of events as Switzerland held the number one spot as the largest importer of U.S. gold during the same period in 2013.
According to the USGS Gold Mineral Industry Surveys, Hong Kong received 78 mt. (metric tons) of gold from the U.S., while Switzerland came in second at 51 mt. If we look at the chart below, we can see the breakdown of U.S. gold exports for the first quarter of 2014:
Together, Hong Kong and Switzerland accounted for 82% (129 metric tons) of all U.S. gold exports, followed by Australia (6.2 mt), India (6.2 mt), U.A.E. (4.7 mt), U.K. (4 mt), Thailand (3 mt) and Singapore (1.7 mt).
Total U.S. gold exports for JAN-MAR were 158 mt. This was down compared to the same period last year. In the first three months of 2013, Switzerland imported 76.7 mt of gold, while Hong Kong received 57.1 mt. Interestingly, the United Kingdom ‘s imports were much higher last year at 22.7 mt compared to the lousy 4 mt during the first quarter of 2014.
Furthermore, South Africa imported 19.1 mt, India 14.1 mt, Thailand 8.1 mt, China 5.2 mt, and the U.A.E., 5.1 mt. The total U.S. gold exports for JAN-MAR 2013, were 211 metric tons. Even though Q1 2013 gold exports were much higher than this year, the market perceived gold was bottoming in March, 2013… so buying picked up significantly.
This can be seen in the chart by ZealLLC.com below as seasonal buying picks up considerably in April and May.
The market speculated that buying would pick up in April…. so would price. However, April was the month gold was crushed as the price fell from a high of $1,590 to $1,350 in just four trading days.
The important factor to note this year, is Hong Kong’s move into first place as the largest U.S. gold importer. In the past, either Switzerland or the United Kingdom jockeyed for the number one spot.
Moreover, Hong Kong imported more gold (78 mt) than all of Switzerland (51 mt), Australia (6.2 mt) and the U.K. (4 mt) combined (61 mt). Now, this doesn’t include U.S. exported Swiss gold that was refined into Kilo bars and sent to Hong Kong.
There are some very eye-opening and interesting trends taking place as it pertains to the U.S. Gold Import-Export-Scrap market. I will be detailing these changes in upcoming articles and a new REPORT.
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