As of late, the performance of precious metals has been uninspiring.

The ETFS Physical Precious Metals Basket Shares (GLTR), which tracks gold, silver, platinum and palladium, has lost almost 25% over the past year. If 20% is still the generally accepted definition of a bear market, then by that measure, metals are in full-blown hibernation.

Physical demand for gold coins and bars has been stung, sliding 30% and 4% respectively over the past year according to the World Gold Council.

Mine production grew by 2% year-on-year to 729.2 tonnes, but is expected to slow during the second half of 2015. Gold mining stocks (GDX) have fallen around 12% over the past 12-months.

Despite the gloomy performance, gold related ETFs like the iShares Gold Trust (IAU) pulled in almost 26 tonnes during the first quarter and experienced positive net purchases for the first time since Q4 2012.