Tokyo Olympics 2020: Shocking Commodity Values of Medals Revealed

Published 07/21/2021, 7:18 AM EDT


The true value of an Olympic medal is incalculable. Whether it’s gold, silver or bronze, an athlete with an Olympic medal to his name is already in the upper echelon of athletes. However, can we assign an intrinsic or commodity value to the Tokyo Olympics 2020 medals?

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What is the commodity value of Tokyo Olympics 2020 medals?

Torches are pictured during the torch kiss event, after the relay on public road was cancelled due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, during Tokyo 2020 Olympic torch relay celebration in Sammu, Chiba Prefecture, Japan, July 1, 2021. REUTERS/Issei Kato TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Over the years, many athletes have pawned their Olympic gold medals and even auctioned them on eBay. The values determined by these athletes is to suit their personal requirements, but the IOC keeps the actual commodity value of an Olympic medal under wraps. The most simple way to assign value is to compare it to the prize money one receives with it.

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For the Tokyo Olympics 2020, Swim Swam revealed the actual cost of the medals and the metals gone into its creation. The Tokyo Olympics medals are 12.1 mm thick at the thickest part and 7.7 mm at the thinnest part. It has an overall diameter of 85 mm and the side of the medal has the sport/event name engraved.

The gold medal weighs about 556 grams and is actually six grams of gold plating on 550 grams of silver. Bit of a scam, but the actual commodity value of it is $790.34. The cost of the silver medal is $440 as it’s pure 550 grams of silver. This means the gold plating alone costs $350.34 at $58.39 a gram.

The price of the bronze medal will absolutely shock you. Bronze comprises 95% copper and 5% zinc, the prices of which are ridiculously low compared to gold and silver. This means the overall value of a bronze medal is $4.04, with copper at $.0093 a gram and zinc at @.00294 a gram. The overall weight comes to around 450 grams.

Athletes who gave away their Olympic medals

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Over the years, many athletes have given away their Olympic medals for charitable reasons. This is probably the most philanthropic gesture an athlete can perform to raise money for a dire cause. Legendary Ukranian boxer Wladimir Klitschko auctioned off his gold medal for $1 million and donated it to the Klitschko brothers foundation.

US swimmer Anthony Ervin also sold his medal on eBay for a paltry $17,101 to raise money for the victims of the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami. Both Klitschko and Ervin gave away gold medals, the intrinsic value of which right now is just $790.34.

Finally, we come to Mark Wells, the American ice hockey player who sold his medal to pay for multiple surgeries he had to undergo. Just like him, his teammate Mark Pavelich sold his medal to support his family.

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Nathan Fulgado

1202 articles

Nathan Fulgado is a WWE and AEW author at EssentiallySports. Having published close to 1000 professional wrestling articles, Nathan is currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier's College. He has previously worked at Free Press Journal as a local journalist.

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