“Gold is the first refuge of the cautious,” says economist Arthur Laffer. Gold and the U.S. dollar have an inverse relationship: as the price of the dollar falls, the price of gold usually rises. As such, gold has typically been seen as a hedge against inflation and a safe haven during economic uncertainty. As the price of goods rises, gold protects purchasing power. There are many ways the average investor can get exposure to gold as an investment: buying an exchange-traded fund like the SPDR Gold ETF (GLD), purchasing gold coins or bullion from a dealer, directly purchasing gold bars and storing them in a safe deposit box or buying gold jewelry. The spot price of gold (currently around $1,300 for a Troy Ounce which is the size of a silver dollar) is the price at which the investor can buy the metal on the open market for immediate delivery. The LBMA and the COMEX are two of the largest international markets for gold. When buying a piece of gold jewelry, it’s important to measure the value of the jewelry by weight and purity. 24 karats are considered pure gold (which is actually within 99.5% purity, as 100% purity is unattainable). The price of gold jewelry s...