Gold has various uses, and throughout history it has been so widely used in art, jewelry and technology.
But precious metal has also long been considered a safe haven, and as a result many investors turn to it in difficult political and economic times. Physical gold bars are a common way to expose, but other ways are to jump into space exchange-traded funds (ETFs), gold futures, options and shares of gold companies.
Gold may be a solid long-term investment, so those new to the sector will be interested to learn more about the yellow metal before jumping into the market. Here are five basic facts about gold that all investors need to know.
1. Basic facts about gold: it is the only yellow metal
While other metals may have a yellowish tinge or color, which usually only happens after they have reacted with other chemicals. Gold is the only natural yellow metal on the market.
Pure gold is yellow in part because it absorbs blue light more than other visible wavelengths of light. Substance absorbing blue light will reflect the rest of the spectrum.
Gold is in the last row of the periodic table with atomic number 79 and the chemical symbol Au. With 79 protons in the nucleus, the electrons of the gold atom are subjected to a powerful electrostatic attraction. As a noble metal, gold is resistant to chemical attacks even at high temperatures.
2. Basic facts about gold: various forms of investment
As mentioned above, new investors have many different options if they want to make money by investing in yellow metal. In some parts of the world, buying gold in the form of jewelry remains the largest and most traditional method of producing gold, especially in India.
For the most part, buying and donating gold jewelry is done for sentimental value. Buying gold jewelry is more expensive than just buying a gold nugget. When investors choose gold jewelry, it is important to keep in mind carat amounts and their attitude to price.
Apart from jewelry, investing in gold can be done in a number of other ways, including:
- Gold bars and coinsA: This includes regular coins, collectible coins and gold bars. They can be stored in a financial institution or in person.
- Gold ETFs: Most gold ETFs track the physical price of gold. According to Gold.org, in terms of grams of gold mined, one unit of gold-plated ETF is usually 1 gram of yellow metal; ETFs can be bought and traded on stock exchanges.
- Gold-focused stocks: When investing in gold companies, investors need to know how volatile the market can be. Shares that extract gold, in particular, can have a leverage of three to one for the price of gold.
- Gold futures: A futures agreement allows you to trade gold at a predetermined quantity or price with a settlement date in the future. This means that the investor does not have to pay for the gold at the time of the deal, and the seller does not have to provide the investor with gold until the agreed date.
3. Basic facts about gold: It is not consumed
A small part of gold is used in electronics, computers, medical and dental fields and in aerospace to lubricate mechanical parts. The rest is used in jewelry and for investment purposes such as gold coins and ingots.
Unlike gas and coal or even copperalmost all gold that has been produced over time still exists and is found in institutions or in people.
4. Basic facts about gold: it is the most malleable metal
Flexibility can be defined as the lightness of a metal can be killed or extruded from its mold without breakage and cracking. There is gold most malleable metals – 1 ounce can be broken into a sheet about 5 meters on one side. The resulting sheet of gold can be struck enough times to make it so thin that it becomes transparent.
Not only but yellow metal it is possible to fold, twist and compress in various forms, thus all remains the whole; this is often done while making jewelry. Gold ranges from two to three out of 10 on the hardness scale. Only when the yellow metal reaches the melting point can its purity be dismantled due to temperature.
5. Basic facts about gold: It can be considered as a currency
And last but certainly not least, gold has interesting currency trends. BMG Bullion Notes that gold retains its purchasing power better than paper currencies.
While gold works as a currency, many don’t see it as one because you can’t use it to buy food at the grocery store. But like other currencies, its price fluctuates – as seen in recorded history, it usually increases when the US dollar falls and falls when the dollar moves up. Yellow metal can also be bought and stored and it has the ability to be converted into money in different currencies.
This is an updated version of the article, first published by the Investing News Network in 2016.
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Disclosure of Securities: I, Melissa Pistilly, have no direct investment in any of the companies mentioned in this article.
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