When troubles really hit the global economy, then expect silver prices to really take off, said Jeffrey Christian, managing partner for New York based CPM Group.“The first half of 2017 will be a continuation of sideways trading for the silver market. We will have to wait till 2019 to move up more sharply,” he said on the sidelines of the Vancouver Resource Investment Conference. “Problems [in the global economy] are not going to erupt in 2018-2019, at some point they will erupt maybe 2022-2024, until we see a financial crisis like 2007-2009 – when that happens the silver market has geared itself up to move not to $30 but to $40 ,” Christian forecasted. Gold and silver prices both hit 4.5-month highs and ended the U.S. day session moderately higher Thursday. An eroding U.S. dollar and a rallying crude oil market are bullish outside elements boosting the metals. February Comex gold was last up $7.40 an ounce at $1,363.80. March Comex silver was last up $0.136 at $17.625 an ounce.