There’s a modern-day gold rush taking place, and it’s due in part to exchange traded funds (ETFs). Investors are flocking to the pretty, shiny stuff because ETFs are making it easier than ever to buy and sell it.

Peter A. McKay and Diya Gullapalli of the Wall Street Journal say that one of the most active ETFs right now is streetTRACKS Gold Shares (GLD), which averages eight million shares a day in turnover. That’s more than Google (GOOG), for the record, which turns over an average of seven million shares.

The price of gold on Friday was at $863.10 an ounce after sitting at 28-year highs earlier in the week. Interestingly, the high price isn’t being driven by actual demand for the commodity – jewelry sales remain soft – but by all this investment activity.

Other gold-related ETFs are the Market Vectors Gold Miners (GDX) and the iShares COMEX Gold Trust (IAU).