Like the metal itself, reasons to buy gold are malleable. Own gold for its untarnishable beauty, or as a store of value, or both. Jewellery is the largest stable component of demand. But when gold soars, as at present, bling starts to lose its zing. This can presage a price drop.

Demand for gold as an investment had outstripped purchasing for jewellery manufacture just three times in the past decade. That was until the last quarter. The switch suggests a speculative bubble is building.

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