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Jewellers need to 'innovate' to survive gold price spike, business owner says

The owner of a jewelry store in northeastern Ontario says the record high price of gold is having an impact on her business.

Gold is at a record price of $1,950 US an ounce

The Jewel Box in Kirkland Lake is owned by Kathy Barnes. (Submitted by Kathy Barnes)

The owner of a jewelry store in northeastern Ontario says the record high price of gold is having an impact on her business.

The price of gold is currently sitting at $1950 US an ounce. That's more than $2,600 an ounce in Canadian dollars.

Kathy Barnes owns the Jewel Box, a jewelry store in Kirkland Lake. That community was built around gold mining and is still mining the metal today.

Barnes says the recent high price of gold is boosting the local community.

"From a standpoint, living in Kirkland Lake it really is great," she said. "We have people who are working and a lot of them."

However, as a jeweller, she admits the high prices are a "bit scary."

"The prices are going up and it's getting more expensive to buy," she said.

"It can be a little frightening."

While the price of gold earrings, bracelets and necklaces are going up, Barnes says she's actually had record sales in heavy gold chains. She says it's a lot of local miners making those purchases.

Barnes says despite the higher price of gold, she's still selling gold chains. (Submitted by Kathy Barnes)

"They're working, they have more disposable income," she said. "The men who are working want to wear the gold that they're pulling out of the ground."

Barnes says her in-stock products haven't gone up in price, but she says new orders will cost customers more.

"Gold is still popular," she said. "It is a metal that holds its value as we can see the value actually goes up."

She says another benefit of gold is that it is repairable, unlike other metals.

With the price being so high, Barnes says jewellers will have to get innovative and may have to look into mixing metals to make jewelry more affordable.

"It may shave off some of the margins," she said.

"In 2011, when the price of gold did skyrocket … we did lose some jewelry stores and some manufacturers in Canada. There are things that are going to change and again, people need to innovate."

Yesterday we were talking about the record high price of gold. $1950 US an ounce. (That's more than $2,600 an ounce in Canadian dollars). It means those gold rings, and gold necklaces have a little more value today...and will cost more if you're in the market to buy. We spoke with Kathy Barnes, who owns the Jewel Box ... a jewelry store in Kirkland Lake. Kirkland Lake is also home to numerous gold mines. 7:00

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