If someone is knocking down your door wanting to buy your gold, think twice.
Most Arab American families have gold jewelry stashed away some place.
Recently, many have been considering selling their gold to pawn shops, jewelers, investors or private individuals because of hard economic times, high unemployment and higher gas prices.
There’s a huge market for gold today. There’s been a recent increase in demand caused by advertising, formal and word of mouth.
According to Zouher Abdel-Hak, a jeweler at NJ Diamonds in Dearborn, it is estimated that each ounce of gold is being bought at $874. An ounce of gold is about 31 grams. That means every gram of a 24 karat piece of gold is worth roughly $29. A gram of 18 karat gold is worth roughly $18.
The 1929 depression devalued gold, which reduced the international value of currency and stabilized the economy.
Later, in the 1940s, a system was put in place to modify a fixed exchange rate for gold to stabilize the U.S. dollar against other currencies.
But in the 1970s, U.S. deficits became so high that the gold reserves backing them lost value. Unlike other countries, the U.S. could only convert dollars into gold at $35 per ounce. The low conversion rate ended up severing international exchanges on gold.
Today, with the Euro being almost 60 cents higher than the U.S. dollar, gold has become a recent focus for many in the U.S. because international countries still have a high value for gold.
Some say now may not be the time to sell, but desperate times call for desperate measures.
Imagine having to sell your grandmother’s 24 karat gold necklace that has been in the family for generations or the favorite gold bracelet that your husband bought you, in order to pay the mortgage. Hard economic times have many feeling pressured to sell their gold in order to survive financially.
Abdel-Hak said gold scammers have manipulated the public into selling their gold cheaply by:
• Paying almost one third to a half less per gram on gold because the investor weighed using a pennyweight system, rather than measuring in grams.
• Manipulating people about the actual gold karat size of the gold.
• Weighing all the gold together, rather than separately and paying at the lowest karat value.
• Offering cash up front at lower amounts than the jewelry is worth.
• Manipulating the gold karat stamped on your gold and trying to convince people it’s not accurate.
Abdel-Hak said the local Arab American community is the richest when it comes to gold, causing them to be heavily targeted by investors.
If you’re in desperate need of money, Abdel-Hak suggests that you weigh your gold at a jeweler you trust, divide it into separate bags according to karat weight and ask for their prices. Before selling your precious gold, compare the offers of different jewelers, pawnshops and investors in order to get the most for your gold.
But, if someone is knocking down your door wanting to buy your gold, think twice, because it may become even more valuable. It’s gone from $35 an ounce to almost $900 an ounce.
Gold is still a genuine means of exchange.