TAMPA, Fla. - The price of gold hit a record high Monday. Uncertainty over COVID-19 infection rates and job losses has been pushing investors to move their money into something safer.
The prices of both gold and silver have been rising since mid-March. This increase in value for the precious metals started just as states started locking down their economies.
At King Jewelers in South Tampa, there has been an uptick in customers interested in purchasing coins and bars in gold and silver or selling their own precious metals.
“They have outdated jewelry, broken stuff, accumulated a little bit here and there, and then they would kinda like to get rid of it because the gold price is so high and the right time,” explained Master Jeweler, Gabriel Can.
The price for an ounce of gold reached around $1,940 Monday. It is an increase of about 30% over the last four months and beat its previous record high set in 2011.
As for silver, prices have roughly doubled since mid-March, hitting around $24 an ounce; a new seven-year high.
“I do think there’s a lot of concern amongst investors in the market, because of our political, economic and social instability that we have right now,” explained USF Economics Instructor, Chris Jones.
That continuing uncertainty is likely the reason for the increased demand for gold and silver and the demand is driving up the value.
“Precious metals can sometimes be a reasonable hedge or a balancing mechanism against inflation,” Jones said.
Economists say worries about higher inflation can lead folks to move assets into precious metals. According to Jones, these trends are definitely something to pay attention to.
“This, at the end of the day, could be either a really bad but yet really short recession or it could be the worst damn thing that we’ve seen in our lifetimes,” he said.
Precious metals, like gold and silver, along with bonds, are often seen as a safe haven for money to keep its value when financial markets decline.