Question of the Day: What is the scrap metal value of a Tokyo 2020 Olympic Gold Medal?

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Aug 23, 2021
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Question of the Day, Investing

Answer: $800

Questions:

  • The "gold" medal is about 99% silver. Why do you think Olympic organizers chose this mix of metals? 
  • Do you think an Olympic Gold Medal is worth more than just the scrap metal value? Why?
  • Will this scrap metal value change over time? 

Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom.

 

Behind the numbers (CNN): 

"The design of the medals changes for each games, and this time around they are the work of Junichi Kawanishi. Each of the gold, silver, and bronze medals is 85 millimeters in diameter and ranges in thickness from 7.7 mm to 12.1 mm. The gold medal is in fact made from gold-plated pure silver, with around 6 grams of gold out of a total weight of 556 grams.

At today's prices that means the gold medal would be worth around $800 if you melted it down, while the silver would be worth about $450 and the bronze around $5."

 

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Interested in spot prices for various metals (gold, silver, bronze)? Here's a good site to find current prices

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For a good news story, read about how An Olympian Sold Her Silver Medal To Fund A Boy's Surgery. 

 

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About the Author

Mason Butts

After graduating from UCLA with a Master's in Education, Mason spent 5 years as a science educator in a South Los Angeles public high school. He is committed to supporting the holistic growth of all students and empowering them to live a life of relational, academic, and financial success. Now settled in the Bay Area, Mason enjoys facilitating professional developments and partnering with educators as they prepare students for a bright financial future. When Mason is not building curriculum or planning a training, he can be found cycling, trying new foods, and exploring the outdoors.