Perhaps you’ve held a small chunk of yellow metal in your hands and wondered, “why is this so valuable?” However, when you compare gold to other metals or elements, it’s obvious why humankind has backed currencies with gold for thousands of years.
Gold has the perfect balance of rarity and durability; even when compared to other precious metals. Silver and palladium are too common, and while platinum is more precious, it is also a much stronger element. While gold has a melting point of 1947.52 °F, platinum will not melt until 3214.9 °F. This means it takes a lot of effort to refine platinum, while gold is much easier to deal with.
Then of course, there are the other natural elements (as in, the Periodic Table). You can eliminate many other elements from being potential currency because they are too toxic, volatile, radioactive, or are only available in gaseous states. This leaves other metals like tin or iron. But again, these can’t compete with gold’s rarity or durability. Gold will never crack or corrode, thus it lasts forever and its value isn’t tied to its age (the metal in an old gold coin can be worth just as much as that in a new one, as long as their purities are equal). This is why early civilizations stamped gold coins. The malleability of gold made stamping easy and its rarity made the coins valuable.
Gold is still highly valued today. We at Manhattan Gold & Silver understand this better than anyone. For over 25 years, we’ve refined, not only gold, but silver, platinum, and palladium too. Contact us to learn how you can turn the precious metal scraps from your business into profit.