To understand why gold is deemed a rare element, consider this. All the copper ever mined in the history of the world would fill a cube a little over 1,100 feet per side, and all the silver ever mined would fill a cube about 160 feet per side. All the gold ever mined in the history of the world would fit into a solid cube a little under 60 feet per side. Known reserves for gold are a tiny fraction of those known for copper and silver. For over a decade, gold has been consumed at a rate faster that it has been produced, due primarily to the relatively high cost of extraction versus the low price on the commodities market.