Precious metal prices trended lower in the second half of 2021, reflecting declining investor sentiment and soft physical demand. Gold prices have been relatively more resilient but were weighed down by outflows from gold-backed exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and slowing central bank purchases. Silver prices slumped on waning industrial demand, while platinum and palladium prices plunged due to weak autocatalyst demand.

Gold prices are anticipated to ease in 2022, but there is high uncertainty arising from the Omicron variant and monetary policy stances.

Gold prices rose slightly in October and November, after a marginal decline in the third quarter of 2021, supported by lower real interest rates. Gold prices have lost strength in the second half of the year, driven by outflows in gold-backed ETFs from North American investors and slowing central bank purchases. The yield on 10-year inflation-indexed U.S. Treasury securities fell to 1.06 percent in November, as a rise in inflation expectations outweighed slight increases in nominal interest rates. - blog.wb.org/blogs

A version of this article appears in the print on December 17, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.