As of the close of the last business day (April 6, 2012), gold closed at $1,634.10 per ounce and platinum closed at $1,602 per ounce. A year ago, the same date, gold closed at $1,461.50 per ounce and platinum closed at $1,808 per ounce. The gap between the metals was narrow enough back then for us to take notice, but gold remained in its placed as 2nd place to platinum (as it has historically, since platinum is rarer than gold). The gap has now closed (as it has a few times in the past), as gold prices have increased beyond what many of us in the jewelry industry are comfortable with.
Does this mean that platinum jewelry will now be cheaper than gold jewelry? Hardly. See: Why is Platinum More Expensive Than Gold Jewelry to find out why platinum persists as the more expensive metal as far as “finished jewelry” is concerned.
How Does This Effect Jewelry Prices?
As a retail jeweler, Apples of Gold, unlike investors and gold-hounds, wants all precious metals prices to come down. Why? Wouldn’t that help our inventory to become more valuable? Hardly, since most online jewelers stock very little to no inventory. As precious metals prices increase, costs also increase from suppliers and manufacturers, and thus the retail price of jewelry also goes up. This has little advantage for online jewelry retailers, like Apples of Gold, since increased prices means a harder sale.
That is why Apples of Gold has remained true to its value-based jewelry pricing methodology. Our intended mission as a jewelry company, has been and and continues to be to offer quality jewelry at affordable prices. We started Apples of Gold with the intention of charging about 40% below standard retail, once we evaluated how much margin we need to make to be profitable as a company, while providing the best possible value to our customers.
Where is gold and platinum prices headed? No one knows (and we hope you don’t believe all those radio & tv ads about how high the price of gold is bound to go!) All we can guesstimate is that as the U.S. and world economy improve, precious commodities such as gold and platinum should decrease in price. Not only are precious metals investments a type of hedge funds to protect an investor’s portfolio from downswings in the stock market, but as the price of gold and other precious metals stop looking as attractive to investors as they do now, gold funds start to become less popular in the minds of not only professional investors and day traders, but also in the minds of the average mom and pop investors, and metals prices start to stabilize and come down again to a more reasonable rate.
With the gap closing between platinum and gold jewelry, Apples of Gold remains steadfast in our stated mission to provide value. We hope you will think so too. Compare us to both offline and online jewelers and you will see that the difference in our jewelry is not the quality, but the price.
Related Post: Understanding the Price of Platinum Jewelry
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