Here's a question we hear from time to time, "How much is the price of sterling flatware affected by the commodity silver market?"
Obviously, commodity silver prices have a long run impact on sterling silver flatware retail prices since commodity silver is the primary raw material for sterling flatware. On the other hand, when considering the secondary market for used sterling flatware, short term fluctuations in the commodity silver price may not impact the prices that much. Consider the chart below from SilverSeek.com that depicts the price of raw silver for twelve months:
Raw silver dropped in price by over 50% during the period from the March 2008 to October 2008. I know for a fact that the market price of a Buttercup teaspoon or a Chantilly fork did not fall by 50% during the same time period. In my opinion, the price for these pieces stayed roughly the same.
So, if you are thinking of buying, or selling, some sterling flatware pieces, my suggestion is not to worry too much about the current price of raw silver. Other economic conditions may have a greater impact.
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