Gold 101: Who's Got It And Who's Finding It
With the dramatic rise in gold's popularity many still need to be educated about some of the core concepts of the gold market, such as who holds it, and who produces it. Courtesy of Money Hacker we have a useful visual representation that answers precisely these two questions. In addition, here are some of the most useful and trivial factoids about gold, that have no bearing on its price whatsoever, but serve as perfect cocktail small talk.
Some Insights into the data on the infographic:
All Gold Ever Mined – The total amount of gold ever mined is estimated to be worth around US$5 trillion.
How Gold is Used – You might have though (like me)
that most of the gold in the world stored in bank vaults and lock-boxes?
Actually, 78 % of the worlds’ gold is made into jewelery. Other
industries, mostly electronics, medical, and dental, require about 12%.
The remaining 10% of the yearly gold supply is used in financial
Producers and Owners – The starkest contrast is
South Africa: number 27 on the list of nations that own the most gold
list despite producing the most gold in the world per year from its
Gold production in the United States – The State of
Nevada has the world’s lowest cost and most profitable gold mines. The
mines average output is about 7 million ounces per year.
The Fed’s Vault – The Federal Reserve Bank of New
York has the largest accumulation of monetary gold. The vault is 25
meters (80 feet) underground and holds $147 billion worth of gold
Current gold price trading on Wall Street:
If the value of gold on the New York stock market is anything to go by then you can see how much its been a safe haven for investors:
And now for some facts and factoids about gold:
Gold Discovery – The first discovery of gold in the
USA is the found of 8-kilograms stone of gold by the son of the farmer.
He and his father were using this stone as the support for a door until
the local jeweller noticed it. And the owner sold this stone for $3.5.
Finally the farmer understood this piece was very valuable and opened
the first gold-mine in the country.
Largest Gold Nugget Ever Found – The largest gold
nugget ever found was in Australia in 1869. It was named “Welcome
Stranger,” It weighed 78 kilograms. After it was melted down 71 Kg of
pure gold was left.
The US Gold Drain – When the American dollar was
first pushed as the world de-facto currency it was backed by gold. One
ounce of gold was worth $35 dollars. After 25 years of the American’s
continual printing of money however, $35 dollars was no longer worth
an ounce of gold. In actual fact one ounce of gold was worth $105. As a
result foreign countries, beginning with France in the late 1960’s,
started to buy gold at $35 dollars until the United States Government
stopped selling its gold, thus removing gold backing from its dollar.
Private Gold Ownership Banned in the USA – Private ownership of gold was banned in the United States for 41 years. It lasted from 1933 to 1974.
Gold Refined and Rare – If all the gold that had
been refined in the world was put into a cube, its sides would be
roughly 20 metres long but would only weigh 1/10 of the Washington
Gold Nugget – Gold nuggets are actually quite rare. A gold nugget can sell for up to 4 times the worth of the amount of gold in it.
Gold Leaf – Gold leaf is commonly 0.18 microns
(seven millionths of an inch) thick. It’s so thin that a stack of 7,055
sheets would be no thicker than a dime.
Largest Gold Nugget Still in Nugget Form – The ‘Hand
of Faith’, is the largest gold nugget still in existence. It weighs 27
Kg (60 pounds) and is currently on display at the Golden Nugget hotel
and casino in Las Vegas.
Gold and Medicine – Thousands of rheumatoid
arthritis victims have chemically liquefied gold injected into their
muscles. It is said that the treatment is successful in seven out of ten
The Heaviness of Gold – Gold is so heavy that one cubic foot of it weighs half a ton.
The Malleability of Gold – A single ounce of gold can be drawn into a wire 60 miles long.
Gold in Water – The worlds’ largest stock pile of
gold is actually in the oceans. For every cubic mile of sea water there
is 25 tons of gold! That’s a total of about 10 billion tons of gold in
the oceans; unfortunately, there’s no known way to recover it
Artificial Creation of Gold – Gold can be transmitted from platinum by nuclear reaction. But, because of the rarity of platinum, it is far too costly.
Gold in Space – The visors of astronauts’ space
helmets receive a coating of gold so thin (0.00005 millimeters, or
0.000002 inches) that it is partially transparent. The astronauts can
see through it, but even this thin layer reduces glare and heat from
Gold in the Bible – You may be interested to know that gold is mentioned 417 times in the Bible. And, the last book of the New Testament, the Book of Revelation states that in the New Heavens and New Earth the streets will made from pure gold!