The demand for jewellery as an investment comes in large part from reputation. While there are no direct factors that link gold prices to inflation, the US dollar, or economic and political concerns, investors’ expectations – as long as enough people believe – are powerful enough to create a relationship.
Bad news about the economy in the US and Europe sent more and more investors to gold as a perceived safe haven. The more investors who bought in, the higher prices rose justifying their purchase and creating a self-fulfilling prophesy. The fundamental problem is that this is the description of a market bubble. The fear is that the market created a pyramid scheme effect whereby the value and use of gold had barely increased but the speculative force caused prices to rise to a point that may not be sustainable in the long run.
Even the types of events that might usually lift prices can sometimes have the opposite effect because of real world supply pressure. The recent fall in prices is partly attributed to the idea that the struggling Cypress might sell their gold reserves to raise money. This comes after part of the previous rise in gold prices having been a result of investors rushing to gold to protect their wealth against the economic troubles in Europe.
Read the Next Blog Post in This Series: Gold Supply
Read the First Blog Post in This Series: Who is Charlie Pollock?
Read Blog Post #2: The History of High Gold Prices
Read Blog Post #3: Comparing Gold, Stocks and Commodities
Read Blog Post #6: Gold Supply
Read The Final Blog Post in This Series: What’s Next?
My colleague Gregory Neilson recently shared his thoughts on the inflationary pressure that is affecting gold prices, you can read his blog post on gold prices here.