How Much Is Gold Really Worth?

How much is gold really worth? The answer we get depends on who we ask and what their opinion is.

Everyone has an opinion as to what something is worth, whether the object of consideration is their home, a late grandfather’s pocket watch, or a specific stock. In that respect, gold is no different.

The price of a specific item or asset at any given time is a reflection of all those varying opinions. Some are based on fundamentals, some are based on technical factors. But the combination of all the opinions, and the resulting expectations (some expect the price to go up, others expect it to go down or remain the same), plus all of the other known factors at the time that might possibly impact the price, provide us with the clearest possible indication of current value for the item in question: its market price.

If we believe that gold is money, then we likely will have a different opinion or expectation than someone who sees gold as an investment; or someone else who deems gold to have no useful value.

If we don’t believe that gold is money, then we are saying that something else is. That something else, practically speaking, is fiat, paper currency issued by a government or central bank (dollars, euros, yen, etc.).

With that in mind let’s rephrase our original question. In other words, “How much is money worth?” In the simplest of terms, money is worth whatever it can be exchanged for. The value of money is in its purchasing power.

With that fundamental understood, then the logic is reasonably simple. Gold (or any other money) is worth what we can buy with it.

So, what can we buy with it? And how do we know that the value of our gold/money is realistically priced?

With gold currently priced at $1240.00 per ounce, the value of gold today is what we can buy with twelve hundred forty dollars.

But is $1240.00 per ounce today realistic? Or rather, are there reasons why we might expect that price to rise or decline to any substantial degree that would influence our choice to hold money in gold vs. U.S. dollars?

In order to answer that question, we need to do some research.

And, in order to diffuse any arguments about whether or not gold is money (and to set aside – as much as possible – any biases) let’s go back to a time when the U.S. dollar and gold were both money and equal in value.

In 1913, both gold and U.S. dollars were legal tender, and interchangeable. Either was convertible into the other at a fixed price. A one ounce (.97 ounces) gold coin was equal to twenty U.S. Dollars and vice-versa. (note: the official gold price was $20.67 per ounce, which multiplied by.97 ounce of gold in a gold coin equals $20.00).

On the surface, it would seem that one ounce of gold over the past one hundred and four years has increased in ‘value’ by fifty-nine hundred percent ($20.67 in 1913 vs $1240.00 today). By extension, that would mean that we can buy sixty times as much with one ounce of gold today as we could in 1913. Not so.

We said earlier that the value of money is what we can buy with it, or we can acquire in exchange for it, but what should be obvious by now is that even though the ‘price’ of gold increased by fifty-nine hundred percent, we don’t know whether there was an increase in actual ‘value’, or possibly a decrease if gold was unable to maintain its original purchasing power.

We can still, however, draw some conclusions about relative performance. The specifics are that gold gained in value by fifty-nine hundred percent ‘relative’ to the U.S. dollar. The corollary is that the U.S. dollar declined by more than ninety-eight percent ‘relative’ to gold.

Now we need to know how both gold and the U.S. dollar fared in absolute terms regarding purchasing power.

And the results are clear. Gold has maintained its value, and even increased its purchasing power in absolute terms, over the century-long period under consideration. Also, the results corroborate the current market price for gold of $1240.00 per ounce.

What we don’t know is the extent to which the current price of $1240.00 per ounce reflects accurately the effects of policies which have led to our current situation. More specifically, exactly how much value has the U.S. dollar lost since 1913? Is it ninety-eight percent, or less; ninety-nine, or more?

The current market price for gold of $1240.00 per ounce indicates a fairly specific loss of ninety-eight and 1/4 percent. A ninety-eight percent decline in the value of the U.S. dollar translates to a gold price of approximately $1000.00 per ounce. And if the decline is closer to ninety-nine percent, then the gold price should be closer to $2,000.00 per ounce.

In August 2011, gold traded at about $1900.00 per ounce. That would indicate a decline in value of the U.S. dollar of closer to ninety-nine percent since 1913.

But nearly four and one-half years later, in January 2016, gold traded as low as $1040.00 per ounce. That price indicates a decline in U.S. dollar value closer to ninety-eight percent. In fact, it is nearly exactly equivalent to that mark. A ninety-eight percent decline in U.S. dollar value equates to a fifty fold increase in the gold price since 1913 (100 percent minus 98 percent = 2 percent; 100 percent divided by 2 percent = 50; $20.67 per ounce times 50 = $1033.50 per ounce).

Between 1999 and 2011, gold increased in price from $275.00 per ounce to $1900.00 per ounce. And during that same period, the U.S. dollar declined in value by a commensurate amount.

Between August 2011 and January 2016, the U.S. dollar was in a clearly defined uptrend. And that uptrend was mirrored by a similar percentage decline in gold.

Since January 2016, both gold and the U.S. dollar reversed direction for about six to nine months and then stabilized, generally, at levels close to where they are now.

CONCLUSIONS:

Gold, in U.S. dollars, is worth somewhere between $1000.00 and $2000.00 per ounce. Furthermore, and to be more specific, the current price of $1240.00 per ounce is a reasonably accurate reflection of gold’s current worth.

Any consequential variance exceeding $1100.00 per ounce on the downside and $1300.00 per ounce on the upside WILL BE accompanied by similar, inverse changes in the value of the U.S. dollar.

The U.S. dollar is the only barometer you need to watch. The elements of surprise and timing are critical. Most especially so, if you are short-term oriented in your thinking.

Items for consideration that could have a substantial impact on the U.S. dollar include 1) new and unexpected actions by the Federal Reserve 2) a clearer picture of the enormity of the Fed’s balance sheet 3) accelerated, delayed effects of inflation previously created by the Fed 4) a credit implosion 5) the Fed’s reaction to a credit implosion.

Some of the listed items, or variations of them, can affect the value of the U.S. dollar positively, too. Which is why you need to keep your eye on the dollar, and not the specific event.

5 Ways to Trade Gold

How is gold traded? The financial markets offer investors a platform to trade using several financial products.

Gold is a fast market commodity owing to its price volatility; usually experienced after a period of relative consolidation and price stability and securities markets reaction to the performance of the US Dollar.

Here are 5 ways to trade gold for investors.

  1. ETF’s

Exchange-traded funds (ETF’s) for gold allow investors to trade gold without physically handling the bullion. Gold EFT’s track the performance of gold spot prices against the various market indexes and hence provide investors with the opportunity to own gold without using it as leverage. The passive management approach of EFT’s ensures that investors’ gold shares are always valued at the optimum market level in tandem with the various market indexes. The virtual gold traded in EFTs is however backed by physical gold assets that are shared among the investors.

  1. Miner single stocks

Investors can buy stock in the gold mining companies in speculation of a dividend due to profits from increased gold prices, or short-term trading opportunities. However, gold miner stocks, including junior gold stocks, are risky because their performance is leveraged against both the domestic market and by the gold spot prices. This gives the investment a 3-to-1 leverage on either side of investing. Traders can be spooked by either the gold spot price or by the domestic factors, making the investment volatile and hence suitable for investors with a large risk-tolerance.

  1. Physical gold bullion

Unlike the EFT’s, traditional gold trading entails purchasing and selling gold coins, bars and jewelry and storing them in a safe at home or in a deposit box at the bank. The physical gold inventory acts as a currency hedge or an alternative source of cash that offers high liquidity. An investor may alternatively purchase physical gold from the markets and resell in retail shops as bars, coins or accessories after value addition. The trader places a markup on the products based on the costs and sentimental value put on the gold products.

  1. ETN’s

Gold exchange-traded notes (ETN’s) are debt facilities an investor extends to a bank, tracked against specified indexes. Upon maturity, the investor gets the equivalent of the index performance in the form of gold. This approach does not guarantee an investor of positive returns and hence it is risky as it lacks a principle guarantee. However, the flexibility of ETN’s allows an investor to strategize gold trading as either long-term, short-term or pursue a mixed strategy.

  1. Closed-end funds

These funds provide investors with a less risky opportunity to invest and trade in gold. The closed-end funds that specialize in gold trading have a portfolio of gold assists where traders chose to trade at a premium or at a discount. The closed-end funds select companies that are conservative, efficient and reliable hence provide a less risky opportunity for investments.

Chris Bouchard is a strategic consultant who works with non-profit leaders and social entrepreneurs to apply concepts and techniques to identify complex strategic issues, find practical solutions, and devise strategies to create and win a unique strategic position. He also offers project development, proposal writing, and project evaluation services.

Gold Bullion: 11 Foolproof Strategic Investment Reasons

Obviously, you may be asking why is gold so important or precious and what is all these noises really about? Well, the brain behind my write-up is that l doesn’t want you to be ignorant of your financial/investment/retirement future and planning. You must not continue to leave in the dark-age in matters concerning gold and precious metals, thus I present before you infallible reasons why gold must be part of your investment combo.

1. Assets diversification. When pondering on investment vehicles, usually an old adage comes to mind “don’t put all your eggs in one basket”. Although some critics say put all your eggs in one basket and watch over it, good luck to them. The reasonable and savvy investors must ensure that at least 5% of their investment portfolio is gold and precious metals.

2. Continual existence of gold. The fact is that gold out-leaved human age and as long as the world remains, gold will be in perpetuity. Gold is superior to other property, products or investments (buildings, vehicles, stocks, bonds etc.) because the value of these properties can erode with passage of time and prevailing economic phenomenon. Take for instance, the global stock market saga of year 2008; also you need to incur maintenance cost in order to keep them in good shape.

Gold on the other hand, the value is not eroded neither does it oxidized irrespective of the number of years we are considering.

3. Scarcity of gold. Gold is finite in supply. Statistics revealed that annual global production of gold is about 2,500tons and the worth of gold in the entire world is estimated at 9trillion US dollars. You better buy into gold now rather than regretting in later years.

4. Status symbol. Without mincing words, gold is highly eyes appealing and have powerful impact on human nature/race. In fact, China and India are well known for the high value they placed on gold as their store of wealth, so their wealth is expressed by the quantity and quality of gold you possessed.

It is inbuilt in human nature to want to belong to the highest investors/social/political class, so the worth of the gold you possessed in some society will dictate whether you belong to this ostentatious class of elites.

5. Counterparty risks. Gold is absolutely excluded from counterparty risk. The said term means you are putting your faith on the ability of the other party to a deal/contract to perform at the due date. The examples of buying stocks, employers and employees will explain better.

You buy stocks from the capital market in anticipation of dividend, price appreciation and cash at later year. It is possible that the stock market may collapse before your target date or the case of employee working for an employer, it is expected that at retirement the employer will pay gratuity and pension but the employer may go under before retirement. All these scenarios cannot happen to gold because it is tangible, in your possession and you can easily convert it to cash to better your lots.

6. Substitutionary insurance policy. The purpose of insurance policy is to put you in the exact financial position you enjoy prior to the loss. Gold can also play the same role if you have same. At the time of national crises (war) like that experienced in Africa – Liberia and Ruwanda, 1Kg of gold can restore a person to life of conveniences again.

7. Bull market (gold). When you read any guide or advisory on commodity or security, disclaimer is usually the beginning of such and the summary is that “past performance is not a guarantee of future result”. Therefore, gold is exempted from that pattern and since the beginning of the new millennium; gold has been on bull-run with double digit gains.

8. Anchor against deflation. Of course, an open secret that economic recession is now a global phenomenon, the ever increasing debts of nations (USA and UK for example) could potentially result to deflation with catastrophic economic impacts. The aftermath is that value of assets will be eroded but gold has resilience and perform better in holding its value irrespective of economic challenges.

9. Geopolitical risks. Wars, terrorism (USA – unforgettable 911), natural disasters and other allied perils characterized the global society today. At the time of war for instance, safety and individual’s survivor is the major concern, assuredly there will be economic paralysis and downturns. The major assets; real estate, financial instruments, other properties and cash currency will be next to useless in value. During such time, gold provides peace of mind and the value remains constant.

10. Store of value. Historically, gold has thousands of years with backup track records as the best store of value. Irrespective of economic and global situations (technological changes, trends, development etc.) gold possessed the feature of acceptability and constancy of value. Therefore, for the safety of your investment, retirement and to pass your assets to next generation, gold is your best bet.

11. Gold is money backer. History tells us that first gold coins were minted and put into circulation by 550BC; gold has been longest and lasting form of money. Intrinsically, till tomorrow sun shall rise, gold remain a form of money-backers.

Discover Gold on Wild Land

Wild Land is undeveloped land, public or privately-owned terra firma. Private land ownership may not include the mineral rights on the land. Think of it this way: A large metropolitan city may have a below-ground subway system that connects subway train tracks in a network of tunnels. People and businesses that own land above the underground subway system do not own it, and may not know that it operates beneath their land.

Before you bother to search for gold, research who owns the land that interests you and find out who owns the mineral rights of that wild land. With gold priced at $1278/ounce (today), do your homework to minimize the time and your effort to find a tiny ounce of gold that will put a lot of money in your pocket. Determine the probability of gold on your target wild land, and its state (pure or embedded in rock). You also want to know if the gold will come to you or if you must go to it. A force of nature, such as water from a natural spring, may bring gold to the surface of wild land. Over time, running water erodes gold-bearing rock so that you may find pure gold in the form of dust or nuggets at low places in the bed of a stream. But, if you do find some gold that way, realize that it got there by rising natural water that passed through gold-bearing rock (like quartz).

In the United States, most folks associate gold with California and Alaska, but did you know about the first discovery of gold in North Carolina (1799)? Some of the purest gold in the United States today still comes from North Carolina and northern South Carolina (veins of gold do not stop at the borders of states). Begin your research for gold on wild land by studying state guides to find out where known veins of gold lay. Then, switch your search to the counties within those states to find out who owns the wild land there and how to reach them. After that, you have three tasks before you. First, determine how you will search, what equipment that you need, and where you will sell the gold if you find it. Second, contact land owners and discuss with them truthfully what you want to do. Seek cooperation. Many land owners will turn you away. You fare better by being turned away and learn from the experience than you will by a charge of trespassing and forfeiture of gold that you found. With persistence, you will find land owners who will talk to you. When they agree to talk with you, come prepared to listen, to talk plainly, and honestly. Likely, they are interested in something that you have said, or they would not talk with you. Probably, a land owner will tell you that they do not want their family, animals, water source, or the appearance of the land disturbed, and they do not want to hear loud noise or receive complaints about what you do from their neighbors. After those details are worked out to their satisfaction, they will want to reach a binding agreement with you about how much of the value of the gold found on their land will be given to them.

Always practice patience, honesty, and transparency with a cooperating land owner. Ask for a trial period before an agreement, so that you can determine evidence of gold before you invest your costs and time, and invite the land owner to be present as often as he or she likes while you search. That way, both of you get to know and like each other. Tell the owner exactly where you would sell gold found on his or her land and invite the owner to come with you if that happy event occurs (transparency). Transparency leads to trust, which leads to an agreement that can be put on paper, witnessed, and signed.

Negotiate the agreement carefully before you put it on paper to present to the land owner. You speak first because you offered do something. The land owner speaks last because it will not happen unless he or she agrees. When you speak first, lay out your costs. Don’t leave out any cost. Examples include: tools, work clothes, equipment (rented or depreciated if you own business equipment), your labor cost, the cost of housing, meals, transportation, and any other cost that you incur because you do not live near the owner’s land. Propose a target price for an ounce of gold in the form of a range. You do not know how long you must labor to find gold, and the price may go up or down. Protect yourself in the agreement if it goes down substantially. Protect the land owner if the price goes up substantially.

The simplest agreements are formed on who bears the risk. You might agree to split profit from the sale of gold that you find on wild land if the land owner agrees to pay half of your cost to search, even if you find no gold. If you assume all costs, you should explain that if all risk is yours, you may not eat. Argue that 90% of the profit should come to you if the owner will do nothing but watch while you work and pay nothing if you fail. Don’t get emotional and don’t let the land owner get emotional if early negotiation stalls. Simply take a break, share a meal, and suggest that more trial time to get used to each other should be applied; negotiate later. As you come to agreement, be careful to include how you will prove your time invested to the land owner. It may be as simple as you dropping by his or her house before you go search for gold on the wild land and at the end of the day. A record of your work should be kept by both parties who sign the agreement. This business process will make sense to you and to the land owner after completion. After a completion, it is a repeatable process, plus you and the land owner will likely build a foundation of trust, a bond, a friendship. Both of you will rejoice when you find gold on his or her wild land.

How to Refine Gold From Your Business Scraps and Make Money

Of all the minerals, gold is probably the more useful thanks to its diversity of special properties. Gold conducts electricity very well, it does not tarnish, it melts at low temperatures making it very easy to work, it can be drawn into wire, it can be hammered into thin sheets and it alloys with many other metals.

Gold is used in jewellery for its wonderful colour and brilliant lustre, but it can be found also in many products that we use in our everyday life. Laptops, phones, cameras and many other devices use gold to connect components.

When thinking about conductors, most people picture copper, probably because it’s the metal that is commonly used. Silver is actually the best conductor, followed by gold. Silver, however, tarnishes quickly when in contact with air. Copper is cheaper than precious metals, but it’s also much slower in transporting electrons. In the world of computing and communications, speed is more important than cost, so the use of gold has become a standard.

The beneficial material properties of gold include outstanding resistance to corrosion, the ease with which it can be worked and high thermal and electrical conductivity. In conditions under which most other metals either tarnish or corrode away, gold remains inert and extremely durable.

For electronic applications, the resistance of gold to environmental effects is perhaps its most important property as it assures that the technical performance of gold wires or gold electroplating remain essentially unaltered with time.

In general, the more sophisticated the equipment and the greater the need for reliability, the greater is the requirement to exploit the advantages of gold as a material. This means that in telecommunications, computers, automotive electronics and defence systems where safety is critical, gold is indispensable. The importance of high quality and reliable performance justifies the high cost.

Gold’s many qualities make it the metal of choice for a wide variety of industries.

Electronic parts

Electronic components made with gold are highly reliable. Gold is used in connectors, switch and relay contacts, soldered joints, connecting wires and connection strips.

Edge connectors used to mount microprocessor and memory chips onto the motherboard and the plug-and-socket connectors used to attach cables all contain gold. The gold in these components is generally electroplated onto other metals and alloyed with small amounts of nickel or cobalt to increase durability.

In phones, most of the gold is in the SIM card, the main board and the smaller components on the back of the LCD screen.

Dentistry

Gold is being used for fillings, crowns, bridges and orthodontic appliances. Gold is a bio-compatible metal, meaning it can be placed in contact with a person’s body and not cause harm to one’s health. It was much more generously used in dentistry up until the late 1970s. The sharp run-up of gold prices at that time motivated the development of substitute materials. However, the amount of gold used in dentistry is starting to rise again. Some motivation for this comes from concerns that less inert metals might have an adverse effect on long-term health.

Aerospace

Many parts of every space vehicle are fitted with gold-coated polyester film. This film reflects infrared radiation and helps stabilize the temperature of the spacecraft. Without this coating, dark coloured parts of the spacecraft would absorb significant amounts of heat.

Gold is also used as a lubricant between mechanical parts. In the vacuum of space, organic lubricants would volatilize and they would be broken down by the intense radiation beyond Earth’s atmosphere. Gold has a very low shear strength, and a thin film of gold between critical moving parts serves as a lubricant – the gold molecules slip past one another under the forces of friction and that provides a lubricant action.

The visor on the helmet of an astronaut’s space suit is coated with a very thin film of gold. This thin film reflects much of the very intense solar radiation of space, protecting the astronaut’s eyes and skin.

Glassmaking

Gold has many uses in the production of glass. The most basic use in glassmaking is that of a pigment. A small amount of gold, if suspended in the glass when it is annealed, will produce a rich ruby colour.

Gold is also used when making specialty glass for climate-controlled buildings and cases. A small amount of gold dispersed within the glass or coated onto the glass surface will reflect solar radiation outward, helping the buildings stay cool in the summer, and reflect internal heat inward, helping them stay warm in winter.

How to refine gold from scraps

So just how much precious metal do you have gathering dust, and more importantly, what’s the best way to take advantage of the possible gold mine at your fingertips?

Electronic products are one of the bigger users of gold. There’s a lot of obsolete electronics out there with TVs, computers, phones having lives of 5 years or less.

The key is to remember that with the mass proliferation of electronic devices also comes the massive build-up of electronic waste. It’s e-waste that can easily end up as a huge burden on the environment if each unit is not discarded properly. At the moment, more than 80 per cent of e-waste ends up in landfills, making it a pretty serious environmental issue.

In addition to this, most of the times, the gold is bound up with a lot of other hazardous chemicals so it’s always a good idea to ask a professional precious metal refiner for help.

The key ingredient to maximizing the obvious potential of electronic waste is proper recycling and extraction. According to the American Environmental Protection Agency, “Experts estimate that recycling 1 million cell phones can recover about 24 kg (50 lb) of gold, 250 kg (550 lb) of silver, 9 kg (20 lb) of palladium, and more than 9,000 kg (20,000lb) of copper.”

Many businesses don’t realise that they can be leveraging scrap gold to their advantage, and all they need is a specialist precious metal refiner to take care of this on their behalf, and ensure that they are getting the best possible price for their precious materials.

It is important for manufacturers to be aware of procedures in their processes which may generate precious metal scrap suitable for recycling.

By using All Waste Matters as your precious metal refiner, you may be able to turn these seemingly insignificant scraps into profit.

Every time we go to visit our clients on a precious metal refining job, they are stunned that this pile of what they considered to be scrap waste is worth any money – often, their eyes light up once we give them a quote.

As experts in precious metal refining All Waste Matters can take care of the whole process, offering a completely free no obligation sampling and assaying service and advising you on your manufacturing procedures which could be producing valuable scrap precious metal.

Gold – A Simpler & Better Explanation

The emotional adamancy which dominates most analysis of gold contributes to confusion and misunderstanding. For example, “Backdrop For Gold Today Is As Bullish As It Has Been In A Long Time”; or “Precious Metal Sector Is On Major Buy Signal”. These and other similar claims are often supported by reams of technical analysis – the best that money can buy.

And this is on top of general misstatements of fact. It would appear that there is virtually no justification for lower gold prices except when caused by manipulation associated with conspiratorial forces.

Otherwise world tension, terrorism, natural calamities, social unrest, economic weakness, interest rates, inflation, trade deficits, Indian jewelry demand, etc, etc. all put a ‘floor’ under the price of gold. At least this is what we are told.

And the timing. Oh, my word; the timing! “It’s now (or never).” “Gold has finally broken through its overhead resistance.” “$2,000/oz by the end of 2017.”

Does understanding gold require a degree in cyclical theory or financial mathematics? Or is it related to climate change?

A simpler and better explanation for gold exists. It only requires a bit of historical observation.

1) First, and foremost, is the simple fact that gold is real money.

Its value (purchasing power) is constant and stable. And its role as money came about through trial and error. Gold has stood the test of time.

2) Second, paper currencies are substitutes for real money.

Gold is also original money. It was stored in warehouses and the owners were issued receipts which reflected ownership and title to the gold on deposit. The receipts were bearer instruments that were negotiable for trade and exchange.

3) Third, inflation is caused by government.

One thing that should be clear from history is that governments destroy money. That might sound harsh, but it is true. And when we say “destroy” we mean just that. Inflation is practiced intentionally by governments and central banks. Its effects are severe and unpredictable. The Federal Reserve Bank of The United States has managed to destroy the U.S. dollar by bits and pieces over the past century. The result is a dollar that is worth 98 percent less than in 1913 when the Fed began its grand experiment.

The relationship between gold and the US dollar is similar to that between bonds and interest rates. Bonds and interest rates move inversely. So do gold and the U.S. dollar.

If you own bonds, then you know that if interest rates are rising, the value of your bonds is declining. And, conversely, if interest rates are declining, the value of your bonds is rising. One does not ’cause’ the other. Either result is the actual inverse of the other.

A stable, or strengthening U.S. dollar means lower gold prices. A declining U.S. dollar means higher gold prices.

In other words, higher gold prices are a direct reflection of a weakening U.S. dollar.

And please don’t confuse the U.S. dollar with the U.S. dollar index. The U.S. dollar index(es) do not tell us anything about the price of gold. A dollar index reflects changes in the U.S. dollar’s exchange rate versus other currencies.

Actual changes in the value of the U.S. dollar show up in the ever-increasing general level of prices for all goods and services – over time.

The threat of world war is ominously present today. Countries and municipalities are going bankrupt. And acts of terrorism are an almost daily occurrence. This is in addition to an economy that can’t seem to improve enough or sustain an acceptable rate of growth.

So let’s buy gold, right? Maybe, maybe not. You see, gold doesn’t care about those things. It doesn’t care whether or not somebody fires a rocket armed with a nuclear warhead or the state of Illinois declares bankruptcy. And it doesn’t react to comments by Janet Yellen or Donald Trump. Indian jewelry demand is not on its radar. Nor are housing starts.

Gold responds to one thing. Changes in the U.S. dollar. Nothing else.

A continually weaker dollar over time means higher gold prices.

Periods of dollar strength are reflected in a declining gold price.

Lets talk for a moment about North Korea and the threat of war. It’s a very scary situation. But even if things get worse, it won’t have an impact on gold prices. Here’s why:

In late 1990, there was a good deal of speculation regarding the potential effects on gold of the impending Gulf War. There were some spurts upward in price and the anxiety increased as the target date for ‘action’ grew near. Almost simultaneously with the onset of bombing by US forces, gold backed off sharply, giving up its formerly accumulated price gains and actually moving lower.

Most observers describe this turnabout as somewhat of a surprise. They attribute it to the quick and decisive action of our forces and the results achieved. That is a convenient explanation but not necessarily an accurate one.

What mattered most for gold was the war’s impact on the value of the US dollar. Even a prolonged involvement would not necessarily have undermined the relative strength of the US dollar.

Main Points To Be Kept in Mind While Selling Gold

World has plenty of gold, which is mined. The mining activity gave the result to hundreds and thousands of gold ounces. The deposits of gold are usually at shallow depths. You can buy or sell it in the markets. You can also sell silver, gems or scrap gold in the markets. It is considered that the jewelry buyers are experienced and very well trained. They are believed to give a fair price for the gold which you want to sell.

Being Aware of the Scams

You should know about the quality and try to make more cash out of your gold. Educate yourself on all the terms and specifications so that you can keep a good bargain. There are places which prey on their customers for more money and to get the money quickly out of them. They convince the people to sell at lower rates than the normal market rate. They make their money while it becomes too late for you to realize that you have been fooled. Do not sell if the buyer pressurizes you. Do not sell to the people who are not ready to weigh it in front of you.

What to Ask the Refinery

The first and foremost point is that if the buyer weighs the gold in pennyweights then you should ask him to weigh in grams. The one weighed in pennyweights can give you a poor amount. All the calculations should be carried in grams strictly for your ease and also today’s market weighs the gold in grams.

Reasons for selling your gold now

The prices of gold have raised up to a commendable rate from $400 to $1000 an ounce. The gold is even at a rate of $1400 which is obviously greater than the initial rate at which it was bought. By selling you can also contribute to the benefits of the environment by reducing the mining activities and markets can use the gold which is already mined. The scrap gold will be recycled by the refineries.

Selling Gold to Buyers

The gold should be measured in grams and you should know that 1 pennyweight = 1.555 grams. This can put you at a loss by convincing you that they pay more money than the other buyers. You always need to know the price you are paid for per gram of gold. If the buyers are bluffing about giving you higher rates than the market rates, you should not fall for this trick as the buyer tells about his best rate at the beginning itself. Search for the professional buyers only so that they give you the best rates. Selling in the markets can help you incredibly to sell at a good price if you are willing to start your business on that money.

10 Interesting Facts About Platinum

The vast majority of platinum production in the world comes from South Africa and Russia.

Platinum is silver-white-it was once known as “white gold”-and it has a number of useful properties, which explains its application in a wide-range of industries.

It is extremely resistant to tarnishing and corrosion (which makes it known as a “noble metal”) and is very soft and malleable, making it easy to shape.

It is also ductile, making it easy to stretch into wire, and unreactive, which means it doesn’t oxidize and is unaffected by common acids.

Platinum is one of the transition metals, a group that includes gold, silver, copper and titanium-and most of the elements in the middle of the periodic table.

The atomic structure of these metals means they can bond easily with other elements. Platinum is commonly known for being used in the manufacturing of jewellery but its main applications spread to catalytic converters, electrical contacts, pacemakers, drugs and magnets.

Here are 10 interesting facts that you may not know about platinum.

1. About 50 percent of cancer therapy patients currently use platinum-containing drugs and some of these drugs, such as cisplatin, are also used to treat tumours and cancer in animals. Platinum is considered a biologically compatible metal because it is non-toxic and stable, so it does not react with, or negatively affect body tissues. Recent research has also shown platinum to inhibit the growth of certain cancerous cells.

2. According to many analysts, platinum production is not likely to rise in coming years. The majority (about 80 percent) of platinum is mined in South Africa. Approximately 10 percent is mined in Russia, and the rest is found in North and South America. Because platinum and other Platinum Group Metals (PGM) metals usually aren’t found in large amounts, they are often by-products from mining other metals. South African producers have already recovered platinum that is close to the earth’s surface. Today, producers must dig far into the earth’s crust for the metal. Deeper mining translates into higher production costs and less total production of the commodity.

3. Nearly half of the platinum that is mined is used in catalytic converters, the part of the automobile that reduces toxic gases into less-toxic emissions. Platinum and other platinum metals can withstand the high temperatures required for the oxidation reactions that reduce the emissions.

4. A cylindrical hunk of platinum and platinum alloy is used as the international standard for measuring a kilogram. In the 1880s, about 40 of these cylinders, which weigh about 2.2 lbs. or 1 kilogram, were distributed around the world.

5. Platinum Group Metals or PGMs are some of the rarest metals found on earth. There are two subgroups of PGMs: Palladium Group-Platinum Group Elements (PPGEs) and Iridium Group-Platinum Group Elements (IPGEs). The first group consists of platinum, palladium, and rhodium. The second consists of iridium, osmium, and ruthenium. No PGMs tarnish and they are highly resistant to heat and chemical attack. They are all excellent conductors of electricity.

6. Objects that date back to around 700 BC have contained platinum. Other PGMs did not make their way onto the scene until the nineteenth century. Malleable platinum, obtainable only upon purification to essentially pure metal, was first produced by the French physicist P.F. Chabaneau in 1789; it was fabricated into a chalice that was presented to Pope Pius VI. The discovery of palladium was claimed in 1802 by the English chemist William Wollaston, who named it for the asteroid Pallas. Wollaston subsequently claimed the discovery of another element present in platinum ore: rhodium. The discoveries of iridium (named after Iris, goddess of the rainbow, because of the variegated colour of its salts) and osmium (from the Greek word for “odour,” because of the chlorinelike odour of its volatile oxide) were claimed by the English chemist Smithson Tennant in 1803.

7. London is the centre for platinum trading but physical delivery tends to take place in Zurich, Switzerland. The NYMEX division of the CME offers futures contracts on platinum. Each futures contract represents 50 ounces of the metal. The price of platinum tends to rise and fall with global industrial conditions. The price of platinum peaked in 2008 at $2,300 per ounce just before the global economic crisis of 2008.

8. Unlike gold and silver, which could be readily isolated in a comparatively pure state by simple fire refining, the platinum metals require complex aqueous chemical processing for their isolation and identification. Because these techniques were not available until the turn of the 19th century, the identification and isolation of the platinum group lagged behind silver and gold by thousands of years. In addition, the high melting points of these metals limited their applications until researchers devised methods for consolidating and working platinum into useful forms.

9. The fashioning of platinum into fine jewellery began about 1900, but, while this application remains important even today, it was soon eclipsed by industrial uses. After the second world war, the expansion of molecular conversion techniques in the refining of petroleum created a great demand for the catalytic properties of the platinum metals. This demand grew even more in the 1970s, when automotive emission standards in the United States and other European countries led to the use of platinum metals in the catalytic conversion of exhaust gases.

10. Extracting platinum is both capital and labour intensive. It can take up to 6 months and 7 to 12 tons of ore to produce one troy ounce (31.135g) of pure platinum. The first step in this process is to crush platinum containing ore and immerse it in reagent containing water-a process known as ‘froth flotation’. During flotation, air is pumped through the ore-water slurry. Platinum particles chemically attach on to the oxygen and rise to the surface in a froth that is skimmed off for further refining. Once dried, the concentrated powder still contains less than 1% platinum. It is then heated to over 2732F° (1500C°) in electric furnaces and air is blown through again, removing iron and sulphur impurities. Electrolytic and chemical techniques are employed to extract nickel, copper and cobalt, resulting in a concentrate of 15-20% PGMs. Aqua regia (a concoction of nitric acid and hydrochloric acid) is used to dissolve platinum metal from the mineral concentrate by creating chlorine that attaches to platinum to form chloroplatinic acid. In the final step, ammonium chloride is used to convert the chloroplatinic acid to ammonium hex chloroplatinate, which can be burned to form pure platinum metal.

The good news is that not all platinum is produced from primary sources in this long and expensive process. According to United States Geological Survey (USGS) statistics, about 30% of the 8.53 million ounces of platinum produced worldwide every year come from recycled sources. Platinum recycling helps promote and protect the future use of a valuable natural resource.

Platinum can be fenined from the most different sources:
-bars and ingots
-flakes and grain
-sponges and powder
-wire and gauze-crucibles
-laboratory and thermocouple wire
-medical equipment
-aqua regia solutions.

Platinum refining terms are customized based on the type and quantity of the platinum scrap you have and the service that you need.

4 Reasons Why Gold Is An Amazing Metal And How to Recognise Fake Gold

These are just some of the reasons why gold is so amazing.

Plasticity

Gold is a soft, yellow metal with a beautiful lustrous sheen. It is the most malleable and ductile of all the elements. Gold is so malleable that it can be rolled into semi-transparent sheets and so ductile that it can be pulled into wires small enough to use in semiconductors. One ounce (28 g) of gold can be beaten out to 300 square feet. You could say gold is the Play-Doh of metals.

Conductivity

Gold is a very good conductor of heat and electricity. Among all precious materials, silver has the highest thermal conductivity and the highest light reflectance. Although silver is the best conductor, copper and gold are used more often in electrical applications because copper is less expensive and gold has a much higher corrosion resistance. Since gold never corrodes and can be moulded to any shape, it’s used to make long lasting electrical connectors in all types of devices.

Reactivity

Gold is one of the least reactive elements on the Periodic Table. It doesn’t react with oxygen, so it never rusts or corrodes. Gold is unaffected by air, water, alkalis and all acids except aqua regia (a mixture of hydrochloric acid and nitric acid) which can dissolve gold. In fact, gold’s acid resistance is one of the reasons why our acid assays are so accurate. Gold does react with halogens. It will, for example, react very slowly with chlorine gas at room temperature to form gold chloride, AuCl3. If gold chloride is heated gently, it will decompose to release the pure elements again. Gold is also resistant to most bases with the exception of potassium cyanide.

Energy Reflectance

Surface reflectance of a material is its effectiveness in reflecting radiant energy. It is the fraction of incident electromagnetic power that is reflected at an interface. Gold is a good reflector of electromagnetic radiant energy, including radio waves, infrared, and ultraviolet radiation. The characteristic optical properties of gold, combined with its complete resistance to attack in any surroundings and its ability to be applied as very thin films, make gold a very versatile material for diverse industries’ applications. For example, gold is often used in aerospace applications to provide protective coatings for satellite components and space suits.

As a refinery, we deal with high volumes of gold in all manner of shapes, weights, and purity levels. Thanks to our technologies we’re able to leverage several types of assays to authenticate the melt-value of anything a customer may bring us.

However, there are also several quick and easy ways to identify alloy from pure gold.

Discolouration: Pure gold does not tarnish, so carefully check for any discolouration. Even slight shade variations can reveal fake gold.

Magnets: Gold (like most other precious metals) is not magnetic. If the piece in question reacts to the magnet, it can only mean that iron, nickel or other ferromagnetic material is alloyed with the gold so it may be a lower karat than advertised.

Scratching: Even without acid, a simple scratch test is enough to uncover many types of fake gold. A Porcelain Scratch test can be performed by using an unglazed tile or ceramic plate and scratching the object on the tile. If it leaves a black streak, the item is not gold. If the streak is gold in colour, the item is likely to be gold. This may scratch the piece, but should not cause much damage.

Float test: Check the buoyancy of the item by dropping it in a glass of water. Real gold is dense and will sink, but many alloys will float. Also, if your piece will rust or discolour, then it’s plated or fake. Of course, this test is more effective on small samples, such as jewellery or alluvial flakes. Be aware that many metals designed to look like gold are still dense enough to sink, so even if the piece passes the float test, you should still try additional assays.