Recently someone asked: "I've noticed a few ppl asking for swaps for 2012 pandas for 2011. Is there a shortage of them? " This is a really good question. Simply speaking, yes, there is a shortage of 2012s. But if you probe deeper into this question, it gets more interesting. A little bit like a Panda Puzzle. Yes, there is a current shortage of 2012s. While spot is lower than $35/oz, it seems that China isn't going to release any more of these silver bears. Which means that if spot doesn't move up about 15% before the end of the year, 2012s could be one of the rarer modern bears. Currently in the USA (APMEX), 2011s are valued at around $60USD, and 2012s at $45USD. Whereas in China, the reverse is more common. Happy is the person who can take advantage of this imbalance. If China releases more of these 2012s (either at a lower spot rate, or when/if spot goes up), then I think we can expect a quick re-evaluation of prices which favor the 2011s. Interesting Panda Days ahead.