From The Conversation. The whole article is worth the time. https://theconversation.com/amp/the...on-the-worlds-favourite-precious-metal-139085 Gold briefings Time will tell if these doomsayers are right, but in the meantime we wanted to bring you five essential briefings on gold and its place in the modern world: Why gold prices go up and down – five charts George Skiadopoulos of Queen Mary University of London kicks off with an explainer on gold’s journey since US President Richard Nixon abandoned the gold standard in the early 1970s. He looks at what moves the price up and down, and how it might fare in the years to come. Countries went on a gold-buying spree before coronavirus took hold – here’s why In the past decade, many nations quietly shifted substantial amounts of their gold reserves from vaults in London and New York to their own countries. At the same time, a number of central banks began buying gold like it was going out of fashion. Drew Woodhouse of Sheffield Hallam University explains why this happened and what it tells us about the world economy. I’m a bit of a modern-day alchemist, recovering gold from old mobile phones With gold prices not far from their all-time highs, here’s a little quiz question: what contains more gold, the average ton of gold ore or the average ton of old smartphones? The answer is smartphones, and not by a narrow margin. They contain about 33 times as much gold, not to mention various other precious substances. Sandra Wilson, professor of ecological metal design at the University of Dundee, shows us into the laboratory where she is artist in residence, aka a 21st century alchemist, stirring phones and circuits into cauldrons of acid to see what comes out the other side. Meet the struggling gold miners who are missing out on the boom in precious metals For all the beauty of gold, it doesn’t look that way when you’re digging for it underground – particularly if you’re one of the many thousands of artisanal miners worldwide prospecting in the darkest corners with little or no government protection. Sara Geenen and Boris Verbrugge of the University of Antwerp tell how these people’s lives are being affected by coronavirus. How the US government seized all citizens’ gold in 1930s Finally we go on a trip to depression-era America, where economists Chris Colvin and Philip Fliers of Queen’s University Belfast tell the story of Franklin D Roosevelt’s decision to seize the gold of all US citizens in 1933. To compound people’s inevitable outrage, it was seized substantially below the going rate and the government announced a much higher official rate soon afterwards. Could it happen again?