Unlike gold, silver is used in many industrial applications, but industrial demand is diminishing as global growth, notably China, begins to slow. Industrial demand for silver dipped 0.5% last year on lower demand from Europe and North America.
In the more mainstream demand side, silver jewelry demand is still rising due to increased consumption among emerging markets, notably in China where we are seeing a rising middle class with increased discretionary money.
On the supply side, silver miners are finding less deposits and producers are expanding into new projects, which suggests that silver could be in shorter supply ahead. [Silver ETFs on the Mend]
iShares Silver Trust