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Economic Commentary

The Surge in Gold Prices

Gold prices have more than quadrupled since July 1978, in contrast to the substantial stability they have exhibited for over a century. The price of gold was $20.67 per ounce during most of the period from 1834 to 1933; in 1934 it was raised to $35.00 per ounce.” The price remained at $35.00 until 1968, when the governments of the United States and several other nations terminated their efforts to peg the price. Gold prices then rose slowly, first reaching $100 in May 1973 and $200 in July 1978. Since then the price rise has accelerated, reaching $300 in July 1979, $400 in October 1979, $500 in December 1979, and $800 in January 1980. On January 18, 1980, gold sold in the London market for $835 per ounce.

The views authors express in Economic Commentary are theirs and not necessarily those of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland or the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. The series editor is Tasia Hane. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. This paper and its data are subject to revision; please visit for updates.

Suggested Citation

Anderson, Gerald. 1980. “The Surge in Gold Prices.” Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Economic Commentary 1/28/1980.