Gold Weight - How Much Does a Gold Bar Weigh?
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How much does a gold bar weigh?
Gold bars come in a variety of sizes. A standard gold bar weighs 12.4 kilograms or 27.4 pounds. While most banks use this measurement, some still store 1-kilogram bricks. As of February 2022, that kilogram would be worth a little over US$61,000. 100 gram or 1 troy ounce bricks are almost as common, tallying up to a spot value of over US$6,100.
Gold's scarcity and lustrous sheen have given it a starring role in everyday life ever since the Egyptians laid the first pyramid stone. Paper currency might be the money of choice, but gold's inbuilt inflation-protection and liquidity have made it a decidedly soft investment cushion. It's protected against the highs and lows of stocks and bonds, and if you need to liquidate in a pinch, it's the perfect asset.
The World Bank currently predicts that this precious metal will be worth around US$1,700 per ounce in the next decade. Some trading websites are more optimistic; Prime XBT, for example, are predicting a price of over US$8,000.
There's a reason gold bars have become a symbol of wealth, but what is their inherent value? That question isn't as easy to answer as you might hope. Gold's value rises and falls every day, and not all gold bricks are made alike. You can't calculate their current value by weight alone, but you can certainly use it to arrive at an approximate number.
How to calculate the atomic weight of a gold bar
Like many precious metals, gold is measured in troy ounces, which are the equivalent of 31.1 grams. Gold is measured this way because it's a dense metal that packs 19.32 grams into every cubic centimetre. Its atoms are tightly packed, giving it a relatively high atomic number of 79. It achieves a relative atomic mass of 196.96657u at 20 degrees Celsius. You can calculate troy ounces by multiplying every ounce by 0.911458, or you can take the easy route by using a mass value calculator. A standard 12.4-kilogram bar is 400 troy ounces.
How to calculate the value of a gold bar by weight
Even the most exacting minting strategy can't deliver a consistent weight, so every bar's assumed weight is approximated. To arrive at a precise result, you'll need to determine the exact weight of the bar in question. Once you have your figure, you can calculate its approximate dollar value by the current price of gold. This is often volatile, particularly during times of political uncertainty. The value you arrive at today will probably change tomorrow, but companies like JM Bullion and APMEX will give you a transparent and comprehensive market worth.
How to weigh a gold bar
Gold is a valuable metal, so every ounce matters. A high-capacity gold balance scale is required to establish your precise weight. Retailers are required to use certified trade-approved scales, but even the most accurate LFT scale can't tell you the purity of your metal. Your assessment will need to include a more comprehensive appraisal that accounts for its karat value, brand, and resale value. Bear in mind that gold's market worth is highly dependent on its quality. Only 24-karat gold is pure to the core, so that glittering 1-kilogram brick might not be as valuable as it looks.
|Karats||Parts of gold||Purity|
|24 karat gold||24 / 24||100% (pure)|
|22 karat gold||22 / 24||91.7% gold|
|18 karat gold||18 / 24||75% gold|
|14 karat gold||14 / 24||58.3% gold|
|10 karat gold||10 / 24||41.7% gold|
How valuable is a gold bar?
There are two kinds of gold bars: Minted and cast. Cast gold is moulded from a liquid state using a technique that's been handed down for 6,000 years.
Minting is a newer method that achieves a smoother aesthetic. These bars can be intricately-designed and engraved. Many minted bars are cast bars that have been compressed and cut. Once they've been pared down, they're warmed, polished, and dried. Their precise weight varies according to their width and thickness.
Gold cast bars are popular among collectors despite the fact that they have a lower return on investment. Minted alternatives offer a higher resale value, so they're usually a better investment choice.
How to get a reliable valuation
Even the most reliable scale cannot replace a professional appraisal. A valuator will need to use acid testing to determine the purity of your gold. If you have access to a recorded history of your bar, your appraiser will use it to determine its rarity and uniqueness. If you own a collector's item, they will also look for maker's marks and trademarks. The quality of your gold will also be assessed with special microscopes and scales.
Most gold bars are .9999 pure, but some brands only deliver a purity of .995. Once your valuator has established the gold spot price and purity, they'll calculate its troy ounces. This will tell you the melt value of your bar, but it won't account for the true resale value. This could rise above your melt value. Your premium will depend on the weight, manufacturer, and condition of the bar. Brand value is equally important. A Umicore bar, for example, will be worth more than a Pamp brick.
Why the size of your bar changes its value
Physical gold decreases in value with an increase in weight. This accounts for production costs, which can be impractically expensive unless you have a beautifully-encapsulated and certified collector's item. As a rule, larger bars have a lower price per gram, but their value tends to be relatively close to the existing spot price.
22 karat gold bars are said to be a worthwhile investment, particularly if you're hoping to hedge your risk against local stock market swings. This precious metal might lose value over the short term, but its long-term value always rises against inflation. It's an excellent way to diversify your portfolio and will keep you protected during times of market stress.
Please remember that our gold weight converter and article are provided for guide purposes only. We always recommend seeking professional guidance when making any big financial decisions.
You may wish to read about the different types of gold and what to look out for in this article by Michael Fried.Calculator created by Alastair Hazell.