How to Calculate Gold Value

by Jeff Franco

There is a standard formula to follow to calculate the value of gold. However, if you plan to sell your gold jewelry, always remember that there may be a significant difference in the the actual value of the gold and the price the buyer is willing to pay.

Separate your gold by karats. Assigning the number of karats to each piece of gold jewelry is the standard way of expressing the purity of the piece, since in most cases the gold is mixed with other metals. The higher the number in front of the "k," the greater its purity: 24-karat gold is pure gold, and other karat designations contain impurities in proportion to their karat number's relationship to 24. For example, a 10k gold necklace is 41.7 percent gold and an 18K gold necklace is 75 percent pure gold.

Weigh the jewelry. You may weigh more than one piece of gold jewelry at a time, provided their measure of purity is the same. Make sure the scale you use can measure weights in grams to at least one-tenth of a gram, meaning a weight of 40.2 grams is better than rounding it to 40 grams. The more precise the weight is, the more accurate the valuation will be.

Obtain the spot price for gold. A wide range of websites report the current price of gold. Just like stocks, the price of gold changes throughout the day.

Convert grams into ounces. One gram is equal to 0.03 ounce. Converting the weight of your gold to ounces is necessary since the price of gold is always reported by the ounce.

Multiply the weight in ounces by the percentage of purity for the gold. For example, if you are valuing a piece of 14k gold, multiply the weight in ounces by the percentage of gold that 14k jewelry has, which is 58.3 percent or 0.583.

Multiply the resulting weight by the spot price. This is the actual value of your gold.

Tip

  • If any of the gold jewelry that you’re calculating value for has precious stones that cannot be removed, seek the advice of a jewelry appraiser to calculate the value for you. Depending on the type and grade of the stone, the overall value of the jewelry can be significantly different than its intrinsic gold value.

Warning

  • It is always a good idea to know the weight of your gold and its value before you approach a buyer. Jewelers may use different types of weight measurements, and to ensure that the weight they come up with is the same as your own, you should be able to convert some of the standard weights. Some jewelers will use a Troy ounce, which is equal to 31.1 grams. You may also find jewelers who use the pennyweight, which is the same as 1.555 grams.

Items you will need

  • Jeweler's scale

About the Author

Jeff Franco's professional writing career began in 2010. With expertise in federal taxation, law and accounting, he has published articles in various online publications. Franco holds a Master of Business Administration in accounting and a Master of Science in taxation from Fordham University. He also holds a Juris Doctor from Brooklyn Law School.

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