Platinum is a precious metal commodity. Coins, bars, and ingots are traded or collected. Platinum finds use in jewelry, usually as a 90–95% alloy, due to its inertness. It is used for this purpose for its prestige and inherent bullion value. Jewelry trade publications advise jewelers to present minute surface scratches as a desirable feature in attempt to enhance value of platinum products. Watchmakers appreciate the unique properties of platinum, as it neither tarnishes nor wears out.
The price of platinum, like other industrial commodities, is more volatile than that of gold. In 2008, the price of platinum dropped from $2,252 to $774 per oz, a loss of nearly 2/3 of its value. By contrast, the price of gold dropped from ~$1,000 to ~$700/oz during the same time frame, a loss of only 1/3 of its value.
During periods of sustained economic stability and growth, the price of platinum tends to be as much as twice the price of gold, whereas during periods of economic uncertainty, the price of platinum tends to decrease due to reduced industrial demand, falling below the price of gold.