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Yin and yang of the gold standard

Gold – the lustre of it and the lust for it are as old as time. But there has been a great surge of interest in buying, investing and stockpiling it since the tremors of collapse that shook the world's financial economies in the autumn of 2008.

Gold has always been the last refuge of the terrified, and as demand has boomed in the last two years, supply has been constricted. Many of the world's biggest gold producing areas, particularly the faboulous Witwatersrand fields of South Africa, have long passed the zenith of their productivity.

The result has been the inevitable leap in price per ounce now hovering around $1,200. We want your gold, shout the adverts on TV and in the press, as the recyclers spot an opportunity.
But here's an interesting thought. In 1908 Henry Ford sold his Model T cars for $850 each, which at the time was equivalent to roughly 42.5oz of gold at the contemporary price.

At the start of 2010 the Ford Taurus four-wheel drive, with accessories, was selling in the US for $42,500, which at the time was equivalent to . . . 42.5oz of gold.

Perhaps there is an unseen balance, a yin and yang, of economic relationship that not even the bankers can upset – despite their best efforts.