Hallmarking on high, climbing 30.6% in January

Punches at the Birmingham Assay Office. Gold and silver hallmarking showed a marked increase in January 2014. (ITP)

Gold and silver "winners" as lower metal prices have impact.

Hallmarking figures for the four UK assay offices continued their positive run in January, with the total number of articles marked climbing 30.6% compared to January 2013.

According to the Birmingham Assay Office (BAO), the continued growth in hallmarking follows uplift during the last quarter of 2013, with Q4 hallmarking growing 9.9%, totalling 3,174,797 items.

With a view to January 2014, gold and silver were dubbed "the winners" with increases of 23.5% in the number of gold articles hallmarked and 40.4% in the number of silver articles hallmarked, compared to January 2013. According to the BAO, this is "a sure sign that the reduction in gold and silver metal prices are having a positive impact on hallmarking volumes".

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Platinum units fell 2.2% in January 2014, and palladium also declined, with articles falling 7.5%.

However, the overall increase in the total number of items hallmarked is a good start to 2014 and a promising sign for the year ahead.

UK Hallmarking figures January 2014 vs January 2013

Gold
24ct (999) – up 55.2% (45 items)
24ct (990) – down 100% (0 items)
22ct (916) – up 43.5% (37,306 items)
18ct (750) – up 12.3% (55,278 items)
14ct (585) – up 55.4% (5,785 items)
9ct (375) – up 23.1% (244,137 items)
Total gold items – up 23.5% (342,551 items)


Silver
Fine silver (999) – down 45.2% (382 items)
Britannia silver (958) – down 74% (602 items)
Sterling silver (925) – up 41.4% (431,799 items)
800 parts silver – down 25% (3 items)
Total silver items – up 40.4% (432,786 items)


Platinum
999 parts – level (0 items)
950 parts – down 2.2% (19,250 items)
900 parts – up 125% (9 items)
850 parts – level (0 items)
Total platinum items – down 2.2% (19,259 items)


Palladium
999 parts – down 100% (0 items)
950 parts – down 10.4% (8,178 items)
500 parts – up 26.8% (975 items)
Total palladium items – down 7.5% (9,153 items)

Total items hallmarked 803,749 – up 30.6%
 

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