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What's That About $1,000 Gold?
March 14, 2008

Various news organizations seem so anxious to reach the nice round number of $1,000 gold that they seem to have prematurely announced it yesterday.

The actual close was $992.30 and as far as I can see, trading in spot gold, that is for immediate delivery, did not hit the magical round number.

Market psychology is a strange thing. Traders and investors are often attracted to round numbers. There is no practical difference between $1,000 and $997 or $998 unless your gold holdings are of Fort Knox proportions.

The milestone will or won't be reached. My earliest memories of the stock market come from just after the 1966 attempt to reach 1,000 on the Dow Jones Industrial Average. It was close but no cigar and it wasn't until 1972 before it actually breached the historical barrier. It was 10 years after that before it made a decisive breakthrough upward.

Do I see parallels? There are a few. The market enthusiasm seems awfully high. The disappointment at not achieving a breach of the barrier might give some sellers the courage to sell and hesitant buyers enough worry to discourage them.

We will see. I write this knowing that I could be completely wrong as soon as formal morning trading begins.

But of course, $1,000 gold has already been proclaimed by many news organizations.

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About the Author
David C. Harper has been a coin collector since 1963. He joined the Krause Publications editorial staff in 1978 and is currently editor of Numismatic News and World Coin News. He also edits two books annually, North American Coins & Prices and Coin Digest. He is the author of the Class of '63 column that runs each week in Numismatic News. His first bylined numismatic article appeared in the June 1971 issue of Coins Magazine and his various Krause Publications assignments included a stint as editor of the magazine 1980-1983. Harper received a bachelor of science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh in 1977. He had a double major of journalism and economics.

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