Sell Platinum

Most people are aware that platinum is more valuable than gold, but few really understand why. If you are thinking about selling platinum jewelry, you should know something more about this precious metal.

Platinum is an element of the periodic table that resembles silver in appearance. In fact, the name is derived from the Spanish platina, which means “little sliver.” Of course, it is not silver. It is much rarer, at only 0.005 parts per million or ppm (10,000ppm=1%) in the Earth’s crust. In comparison, silver is at 0.075 ppm. It is also highly non-reactive, ductile, malleable, and dense, which is why it is used extensively for industrial as well as decorative purposes.

Platinum is also about twice as expensive as gold when the economy is good. This is because of its industrial applications. When the economy is stable, a lot of industrial activity is going on. When the economy is bad or unstable, however, platinum prices can go lower than that of gold. For example, in the midst of the European economic crisis in 2008, the price of platinum dropped from $2,252 to $774 per troy ounce. In comparison, gold only dropped from $1,000 to $700. Anyone who invested in platinum before 2008 would have suffered a huge loss if they had sold it in 2008. As of June 2016, the price of platinum is $980 per troy ounce, while gold is at $1,288. This is the reason why most people prefer to invest in gold and gold jewelry.

A bit of platinum history

Platinum was discovered relatively late compared to gold and silver. Archaeologists found traces of it mixed in with the gold of ancient Egyptian tombs built in 1200 BC, but it is likely that the inclusion of platinum was accidental, and that the Egyptians did not recognize it for what it was.  Pre-Columbian Americans used a mix of platinum, rhodium, iridium, and palladium as an alloy to make white gold. It was obvious that the value and rarity of platinum was not appreciated until much later on. In fact, the Spanish considered it an impurity of gold, and threw it away.

It wasn’t until 1741 that scientist began to study the curious metal that Italian humanist Julius Caesar Scaliger described as one “which no fire nor any Spanish artifice has yet been able to liquefy” in 1557. A report on the metal sent back by British metallurgist Charles Wood was published by Antonio de Ulloa, known as the discoverer of platinum, in 1748. Other studies began being published on the metal, including a detailed account  in 1752 by Henrik Scheffer, who described a process of fusing platinum ore using arsenic, which is still the best way to melt it. Scheffer’s work established platinum as a precious metal, and in the 18th Century, King Louis XV of France  said it was the only metal  fit for a king.

Platinum uses

Platinum is remarkably resistant to corrosion and high heat, and it is often found as native platinum in rivers, which s why South American natives used it to make artifacts.  The biggest reserves of platinum known today is in South Africa, Russia, and Canada. Smaller reserves are in the US, particularly Montana. Deposits have also been found in India. Higher concentrations of platinum are found on the moon, but it will be a while before the technology is available to make it economically viable to mine.

Platinum coins, ingots, and bars are traded much like silver and gold. Many modern wedding and engagement rings are made of platinum because of its beauty, durability and value, and are often 90% to 95% pure. Platinum is also used in high-end limited edition watches such as those produced by Rolex, Breitling, Vacheron Constantin, and Patek Philippe. Its value is in the fact that it does not wear out or tarnish. It has even been inducted in British royalty. The crown frame of Queen Elizabeth is made of platinum, the first such to be made. About 30% of the world’s platinum is used for jewelry.

In industry, the biggest use of platinum is in emissions control devices for vehicles, followed by petroleum refining and chemical production. Hard disk drives and other electrical components may also contain tiny amounts of platinum. It is also used in glassmaking tools, medicine, biomedicine, anticancer drugs, oxygen sensors, electrodes, turbine engines, and spark plugs.

Selling platinum

It is easy enough to sell platinum because there is a high demand for it. Most gold and silver traders will buy it off you like a shot, and pawnshops are not far behind. You can get as much as 95% of spot price for the platinum in your coins, bars, ingots, jewelry or scrap, so it is important to shop around for the best prices. You may also want to keep an eye on the platinum prices, because the price can change sharply from day to day.

You should also consider that your jewelry are most likely to include gemstones as well, so it is not simply a matter of the platinum itself. Most precious metal traders will only be interested in your platinum. If you want to get back what you paid for your jewelry, you should ask the jeweler about the details of your platinum as well as the type, weight, and quality of your gemstones.  This will take time, however, and you will have to find  someone who is interested in the jewelry rather than the platinum. If you are in a rush to sell your jewelry for cash, then this is not the best option for you.

Conclusion

Platinum is a very rare and precious metal that gets used a lot, and not only in jewelry. Because it is so scarce, you will have no problems selling it for instant cash. The only thing you have to worry about is getting a good price for it. Go to a reliable buyer in your area with many years of experience to ensure you get a fair price.