Valley residents part of modern day gold rush

FRESNO, Calif.

The price of an ounce of gold ended Friday at over $1,275. The precious metal has attracted both investors and people in need of extra cash.

Lately Steve Foster, Jr. of the Fresno Coin Gallery has watched local investors actively buy and sell gold. Foster said, "A lot of people are concerned about the future of the US dollar and they want to hedge against inflation."

You might not have a two-ounce gold nugget to sell but many people like Deanna Mandela of Fresno are bringing in old jewelry to cash in on the record high gold prices. Mandela explained, "Just some old rings and whatever. When's the last time you wore them? Oh gosh, a really long time. A couple I wore and they broke so I have no use for them anymore."

Broken jewelry is fine since the gold will just be melted down. Foster said, "Many people bring in an accumulation, stuff from old relationships or family inheritance or things that are no longer worn or maybe they could just use the money more than this gold. We would pay 800-dollars for this amount of gold."

In some cases, gold jewelry bought many years ago can have still have a high resale value. Foster said, "That's definitely true. Gold was 300-dollars ten years ago and now it's 1200 dollars. They're actually saying, wow I can get 400 dollars for this. I only paid 500 dollars for this. I got to wear it for 10 years."

While many businesses have been forced to lay people off, the Fresno Coin Gallery has hired 10 people within the last year. They're needed to accommodate the long lines of customers bringing in gold items.

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