New York--Depressed by weak investment demand and oversupply, the per-ounce price of platinum has sunk below $1,000 and the metal is expected to remain less expensive than gold into, and possibly through, 2016.

At the close of the market Wednesday, platinum was at $984 per ounce compared with $1,096.70 for gold, spot charts from Kitco.com show.

This is not the first time that the per-ounce price of platinum has sunk below that of gold, though Erica Rannestad, a senior analyst for the GFMS team at Thomson Reuters, said it might stay that way for longer than it ever has. 

On Tuesday, Thomson Reuters dropped its average platinum price forecast for 2015 from $1,350 to $1,085. It revised its 2016 prediction downward as well, from $1,325 to $1,125.

Rannestad said they expect platinum prices to remain below that of gold for the rest of 2015 and throughout 2016, not topping gold again until 2017.

London-based consultancy Metals Focus forecasts quicker recovery for platinum, topping gold again by the second quarter 2016. 

Still, director Nikos Kavalis said they, like other analysts, have been taken aback by just how low platinum has gone. “We’ve been surprised by the weakness of platinum on a number of occasions in the past year,” he said.

RELATED CONTENT: Platinum to average $1,477 in 2015

Other precious metals are down as well.

Gold prices dropped off in July, though the decline has not been as surprising to analysts, who expected the metal’s price to fall in 2015.

After averaging about $1,251 in January, the price of gold has averaged $1,137.82 so far in July, a Kitco.com chart shows. It hit its lowest point on July 24, $1,080.80 an ounce. On Wednesday, the metal closed at $1,096.70 an ounce.

The price of gold is expected to increase in the fourth quarter.

Rannestad said Thomson Reuters anticipates gold will finish the year with an average price of $1,180 an ounce, up slightly from the $1,170 predicted at the beginning of the year. The forecast for 2016, $1,250, remains unchanged.

Silver, which usually shadows the price of gold, also is down. Like the other precious metals, its highest monthly average, $17.09, came in January and it hit its low for the year, $14.49, in July.

The metal closed at $14.81 an ounce Wednesday.

RELATED CONTENT: Silver price expected to fall again in 2015

Rannestad said Thomson Reuters sees silver finishing the year with an average price of $16.20, down very slightly from the $16.55 predicted at the start of 2015. The forecast for 2016, $17.75, remains unchanged.

Kavalis said the price of silver, which has declined more sharply than expected over the past few months, is expected to experience a stronger recovery than gold in 2016.


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