Gold supply

Global gold supply comprises mine production and gold recycling. The annual total fell 4% year-on-year, to 4,258.3 tonnes – its lowest level since 2009. Mine production in 2015 saw its slowest annual growth rate since 2008, at just 1% year-on-year, to 3,186.2 tonnes. In Q4 mine production fell by 2% year-onyear, which was the first quarterly decline since Q3 2008.

The decline was widespread geographically and was the result of a variety of factors, such as mine closures, technical issues, and lower ore grades. Recycling continues to be squeezed, given the weak gold prices, and annual gold recycling dropped by 7% year-on-year to 1,092.8 tonnes in 2015, hitting its lowest level since 2007.

As the gold market remains challenging, we expect mine supply to continue to fall in the next years. Mining companies’ recent focus on cost-cutting has resulted in the closure of higher cost production. Reduced budgets for exploration and project development have led to lower production from current mines and the prospect of further restrictions on future production.

China remains the world’s largest producer although production in 2015 was almost flat year-on-year at 456.5 tonnes. Russia is still in the top-three producing countries with an output of 256.7 tonnes.

Gold supply, tonnes

2015 2014 YoY Change YoY Change, %
Mine production 3,186.2 3,140.5 45.7 1%
Net producer hedging -20.8 103.6 - -
Total mine supply 3,165.4 3,244.1 -78.7 -2%
Recycled gold 1,092.8 1,169.7 -76.9 -7%
Total supply 4,258.3 4,413.9 -155.6 -4%

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