The impact of gold
Australia and Russia hold a large share of the world’s gold mine reserves, accounting for 9,500 metric tons and 8,000 metric tons, respectively. Worldwide, the production of gold reached some three thousand metric tons in 2016. China currently produces about 15 percent of the world’s gold.
Gold is known for its bright lustrous yellow color and was often used as a monetary standard in the past. It is a precious metal mostly used in jewelry, for investments, and in coinage. India manufactured a large share of the world’s gold jewelry, totaling 618 metric tons in 2012. In fact, jewelry accounted for most of the world’s gold, totaling 1,908 metric tons in 2012. The United States holds about 75.3 percent of its total monetary holdings as gold reserves; Switzerland holds about 6.1 percent of its holdings as gold. This transition metal is also valued for its ductile, malleable, and non-reactive characteristics. Thus, it is also used industrially, often as electrical connectors, infrared shielding and colored-glass protection. The price of gold can vary, it reached a recent low in the early 2000s at 279 U.S. dollars per troy ounce in 2000 and increased to a high of 1,669 U.S. dollars per troy ounce in 2012. As of 2016, the average price of gold was 1,250.74 U.S. dollars per troy ounce.