Gold reserves (or gold holdings) are held by central banks as a store of value.
At the end of 2004 central banks and official organizations
held 19% of all above ground gold as a reserve asset. In
2001, it was estimated that all the gold ever mined totalled
145,000 tonnes. As one metric tonne equals 1,000 kilograms
(or 32,150 troy ounces), this equated to a value of US$3
trillion in April 2006. For comparison, the entire global
market capitalization for all stock markets was US$43.6
trillion in March 2006. About one percent of all above ground
gold (370 metric tonnes) was mined in the first five years
of the California Gold Rush (worth approximately US$7.2
billion at November 2006 prices).