MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — For 35 years, Bill Himmelwright’s Premium Quality Coin has been a buyer and seller of rare coins and precious metals. But seldom comes a surge in consumer interest quite like this.

“I think it started right after they declared this a pandemic,” Himmelwright said.

COVID-19 and its economic uncertainties are jolting investor confidence. That is causing volatility in stock equities, a falling dollar and adding fears of inflation. All of which contribute to fueling a sudden price surge in gold and silver.

“In my opinion we’re in the beginning stages of a financial situation that is going to cause people a lot of anxiety and uncertainty,” Himmelwright said.

At around $1,950 dollars an ounce, gold is setting all-time high prices per ounce.

Meantime, across town at St. Louis Park’s Twin Cities Gold and Silver, they are seeing the same spike in investor interest.

“The purchasing power of gold and silver — it stays through time,” Evan Kail said.

Kail fears the nation’s spending of trillions of dollars in COVID-19 relief will further spur inflation, not to mention destabilizing equity and bond markets while causing the dollar to fall. When that happens, investors looking for stability and certainty will turn to the tangible value of gold and silver.

“Because when prices jump up like this, it’s been pretty stable throughout unstable times, now the markets are starting to move,” Kail said. “We’re seeing a lot of people selling, a lot of people buying too. It’s just panic going on in the market.”

Which has always been the best motivator to precious metals.