How did the price of gold change throughout history?


Quick Answer

Since 1945, the price of gold has fluctuated between 35 and 1,746 USD, representing a net change of 3,800 percent. The forces of demand and supply have influenced most of these price changes.

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Full Answer

Although traders have used gold as a form of currency throughout history, economic regions did not peg a universal value to gold until the late 19th century. In the early 1900s, companies that traded in gold fixed a standard price by holding daily meetings. After the Second World War, European countries placed the value of a troy ounce of gold at 35 USD. The value of an ounce of gold rose to 37 USD in 1970. In subsequent years, the dollar value of gold increased steadily and reached an all-time high of 1,746 USD in 2012.

Between 1980 and 2000, the price of an ounce of gold averaged 300 USD. Since 2000, the price of gold changed dramatically due to the increasing forces of demand and supply. Particularly, the price of gold has increased due to an increasing demand for the precious metal in the jewelry industry. In recent decades, the use of gold as a hedge against economic stress has also increased the price of the metal.

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