What determines the price of gold? It is the price of other assets.
Fear that they will not retain their value sparks a price rise in gold. From 2004 to 2007, some investors worried about the sustainability of asset prices as stocks and real estate, bought gold to hedge against a financial collapse. Gold prices correlate inversely with the economy; gold prices rises as the economy declines.
Gold miners have an investment, the miners, and an insurance, the gold. Shares of gold miners correlate inversely with the general stock market.