Most people would much rather own stocks than gold. Most of the time, they are probably right. Gold pays no dividends. Nor does it invent new things or open up new markets... or any of the other things that make stocks go up.
And now most people seem to think there is a "recovery" under way... and that the authorities have everything under control. So who needs gold?
According to Kim MacQuarrie's book The Last Days of the Incas, a sailor in the 16th century earned about 8 ounces of gold for a year's worth of service.
How much does a merchant seaman today earn? A quick Google search reveals a wage of about $2,500 per month... or about $30,000 per year.