Anyone in the jewelry business is ever-mindful of daily fluctuations in price of precious (and other) metals. During the past two weeks, gold, silver and platinum have once again been zig-zagging upward in a pattern similar to the highs we last saw during Jan. to Feb. 2017 when the cost of gold shot up more than 8%. Today, gold closed at $1,419 – after peaking at almost $1,423 on June 25. And, some market analysts are predicting gold could rise to as much as $2,000 by the end of 2019.
This is a good news-bad news situation for jewelers, because we can sell scrap and get a great price for it – but the cost of metal to create new inventory will be much higher and have to be passed on the customer.
There are ways to cope with higher metals prices, and creative artisans always find solutions for continuing to make beautiful pieces but somehow using less expensive materials. Maybe they use only gold bezels with the body of the piece being silver, or use a lower karat, or redesign pieces to require less metal.
My solution to the never-ending problem of expensive metal is easy: Sell scrap when prices are high, and then purchase a less expensive metal to fabricate with. And, to still get some beautiful bang for the buck, with the leftover cash, I buy gorgeous gemstones instead!
In the meantime, here’s a handy list of helpful resources for refining your precious metal scrap:
- The Kitco Real Time gold scrap calculator will help you determine the value of your scrap based on Karat and gram weight. It is super-easy to use and programmed to provide a USD price in real-time, based on the daily spot price of gold.
- David H. Fell & Company offers an online scrap metal estimator/calculator and refining services in exchange for a check, product exchange, credit to a customer account, or a vault account deposited in ounces to take advantage of increases in precious metal prices.
- Rio Grande’s Precious Metal Recycling Service offers up to 85% of the value of carefully sorted silver and gold in exchange for a direct transfer to a bank account, store credit or check.
- Stuller Metal Clean Scrap Program also offers the option to receive a credit, check, or direct deposit in exchange for clean gold and other precious metal scrap using one of two analysis methods: Fire assay or X-Ray Fluorescence.