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Consider Precious Metals With Scrap Gold Bullion and Recovered Gold

Precious metals have been a way to accumulate wealth for thousands of years. While some people may be able to accumulate large quantities in gold bullion bars, even small amounts can have value to the new or budget collector. Gold coins from a mint may be a traditional collector's route, but scrap and old jewelry can also hold their values.

What is bullion?

Bullion is a term that applies to any bulk precious metal. Gold bullion is melted or consolidated gold that is appraised in bulk. It is assessed by weight and purity. Bullion can be newly mined gold that is first being appraised or gold that is accumulated from recovered scrap sources. In both cases, the value is based on a bulk market price instead of on the value of the item crafted from the metal.

How is gold appraised?

Gold is priced based on a commodities exchange. It will vary, like stock prices, daily or even several times within the same day. Spot price is a typical indicator for the price. This is the median between buy price and sell price on these exchanges. Spot price is listed for the different purities, or karats, of an ounce of gold.

What is the karat system of gold value?

Gold's purity is indicated by the number of karats it has. Pure gold is 24K, or 24 karat. This rating means that the gold has no other metals mixed in, which makes it valuable but also malleable. Lower purities make the gold stronger, but it also will have a different spot value that is indexed to its karat number. Gold coins, like the Krugerrand, are often 22K or 90% gold, which makes them strong enough to hold their minted shape but also high in value. Jewelry, which requires more strength, is often 14 to 18 karats.

Where can recovered gold be found?

Recovered gold is often melted down from gold used in other purposes. It includes gold made from:

  • Jewelry: Rings, bracelets, necklaces, earrings, and watches
  • Industrial equipment: Used as an electrical conduit
  • Scrap or damaged coins: No longer recognizable or negotiable currency
Content provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute investment advice.
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