Discuss th relationship between the commerical prices of common metals, their actual abundances and the relative costs of production. 

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jschmall eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This all sort of depends.  I will try to answer this question with a few examples.  My first example is Gold.  This is the most expensive of the commonly used metals.  It has a very high in price and that is because it is very low in abundance.  There just isn't large amounts of gold to be found.  That being said it is easily mined and produced and the demand is high for gold.  Another metal that is very commonly used is aluminum.  This metal is the most abundant on Earth.  However, it is very difficult to extract therefore the cost of production of aluminum is high.  Thus commerical prices, abundance, and cost of production are all connected.  The more abundant the metal and the easier it is to extract and produce the lower the commerical price.  The less abundant the metal and the harder it is to extract and produce the higher the commercial price.  Of course you also have to have demand for the metal as well.  I can mine gold all day, but if it is not in high demand then the commercial price will be low. However, if it is in high demand as gold is, well you have been to jewelry stores.

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