It is estimated that all the gold mined ever would fit inside a cube of 20 meters. The world’s aboveground gold stock grows on average by 1 to 2% per year.
Although the gold market is very opaque, experts generally estimates all time above ground gold stocks stand at about 170,000 tonnes of gold, approximately 20% of which is owned and hoarded by central banks alone.
Annual gold supply is just over 4,000 tonnes per year, with roughly 60% coming from miners and 40% from recycled gold (unlike industrial silver, gold is almost completely recovered and recycled back into above ground inventories).
Source: Visual Capitalist
The following image is a visual of annual gold production according to Visual Capitalist (take note: they are discounting 1,000 tonnes of scrap gold supplies from the visual). Regardless you can see how paltry a year’s worth of mined gold is compared to the inheritable world:
Source: Visual Capitalist, slide 2 of 9
Global gold demand was just over $200 billion USD in 2013. For prospective, physical silver’s global demand totaled approximately $25 billion USD market for 2013 or 1/8th the volume of dollars that went to buying physical gold.
The next article in our Beginners’ Guide to Buying Physical Bullion will discuss peak gold.