As of 2009 holders of COMEX gold futures have experienced problems taking delivery of their metal. Along with chronic delivery delays, some investors have received delivery of bars not matching their contract in serial number and weight. The delays cannot be easily explained by slow warehouse movements, as the daily reports of these movements show little activity. Because of these problems, there are concerns that COMEX may not have the gold inventory to back its existing warehouse receipts.[55]
Golden Eagle Coins offers a system making it easy to buy gold online. Simply place an order on our website and this will lock the price in at the time of order. The best way to pay for the product is usually a bank wire, however we accept many different payment methods. Most will vary with processing time, wire transfer being the fastest. Gold can be purchased 24/7, 365 days a year on our website. We also offer local pickup options in the Washington DC, Maryland & Virginia metropolitan area. Gold product prices are tied directly to the world spot gold price and are updated every minute in real-time. Premiums for both coins and gold bars can vary depending on the product as outlined below.

A. The short answer is 'When you need it.' Gold, first and foremost, is wealth insurance. You cannot approach it the way you approach stock or real estate investments. Timing is not the real issue. The first question you need to ask yourself is whether or not you believe you need to own gold. If you answer that question in the affirmative, there is no point in delaying your actual purchase, or waiting for a more favorable price which may or may not appear. Cost averaging can be a good strategy. History tells us that panics, mania, crashes and collapses are as common to financial history as thunderstorms to placid summer afternoons. The real goal is to diversify so that your overall wealth is not compromised by economic dangers and uncertainties like the kind generated by the 2008 financial crisis.


The Hard Assets Alliance was created in 2012 by a group of trusted independent financial researchers who believe that every investor should hold physical precious metals for both capital preservation and capital gains. With more than 35 years in the investment world, the Alliance founders are uniquely positioned to facilitate the needs of the average investor.
Gold can be a profitable investment when all others fail. If you are concerned about inflation or the devaluation of your country’s currency, you may want to add gold to your portfolio. That said, understand the specific gold investment you’re considering thoroughly before you actually invest. For example, exactly how much will it cost you to store and insure physical gold? What are the tax differences for your income tax bracket between investing in a gold ETF or a gold mining ETF? Knowing the details can make a big difference when it comes to profitability.
Over the trailing five year period through March 31, 2018 the standard deviation of gold, using ETF SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEMKT:GLD) as a proxy (more on this gold-owning ETF below), is 16. The annualized return over that span was a loss of around 4%. Putting those two numbers together, there is a reasonable probability that gold will provide a gain of between 12% and a loss of 20% in any given period. That's a pretty big range that dips soundly into negative territory. By comparison, the standard deviation of the S&P 500 Index over the same span was a little under 10 with an average annualized return of about 13%, suggesting the expected range was between a gain of 23% and a gain of 3%. Which one sounds safer to you?   
Since its discovery, the precious metal gold has never ceased to fascinate. Initially used heavily in pieces of jewelry and currency, today it can be found in a number of other various industries due to its impressive conductivity and malleability. Though currently it's not often found in circulated pieces of currency, the precious metal is still widely collected across the world by civilians and governments alike. While gold coins or rounds are still popular, frequently gold is stockpiled in bar form due to a number of factors like the number of available sizes and how easy it is to track, stack, and store. Here at the U.S. Gold Bureau, we take a lot of pride in the wide variety of gold we offer. This is especially true when it comes to our stock of gold bars. Ranging in size from 1 ounce bars to 100 gram bars, you should be able to find whatever sized ingot you're looking for. What's more, we carry bars from a number of different refiners and manufacturers. Get bars made by International Trade Bullion or take a look at package deals that contain gold bullion from a number of different refineries like RMC, Perth Mint, and PAMP.
Clearly, there's more to understand about streaming companies, but a short list of benefits includes widely diversified portfolios, contractually built-in low prices that lead to wide margins in good years and bad, and exposure to gold price changes (since streaming companies make money by selling the gold they buy from the miners). That said, none of the major streaming companies has a pure gold portfolio, with silver the most common added exposure. Franco-Nevada Corp., the largest streaming and royalty company, also has exposure to oil and gas drilling. So you'll need to do a little homework here to fully understand what commodity exposures you'll get from your investment. And while streaming companies avoid many of the risks of running a mine, they don't completely sidestep them: If a mine isn't producing any gold, there's nothing for a streaming company to buy.
“ For the first time buying coins off the internet, I am more than pleased. Coins came in the quality promised and in the time frame that was stated with secure delivery. Also the prices and selections are good with excellent service. Since I will be buying again from Golden Eagle and can without resevation recommend it to other individuals. Sincerely, Wayne Schenk ”

However, some gold dealers use these facts to scare investors into buying overpriced coins. Some history: Hello, the U.S. is no longer on the gold standard and hasn’t been since 1971. And the limit on gold ownership in the U.S. was repealed in 1974. So notwithstanding the paranoia-laden pitches of some salesmen (and right-wing radio hosts), there is no danger of gold confiscation.

Imagine yourself sitting in a stream swirling water in a metal pan, desperately hoping to see a small yellow glint. That flash would be light reflecting off gold, the metal that you might have traveled across a continent to find in the early 1850s. But why? What's so special about gold that people were willing to uproot their lives in the hopes of finding this precious metal? And, more important, why does gold still hold such a prominent place in our global economy? Here's the introduction to gold you need before you start investing in it, including a look at your choices -- jewelry, coins, bullion, gold certificates, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds, futures contracts, gold mining stocks, and gold streaming and royalty companies -- and a discussion of the best gold investing strategy for beginners.
One of the most frequently asked questions is, "What gold bar should I buy?" In addition to the size of the gold bar having an impact on overall price and premium above the fluctuating gold spot price, the gold bar’s mint may affect a gold bullion bar’s pricing slightly.  A highly recognizable government gold bar may sell for a few dollars more than a like kind gold bar from a less recognizable privately minted gold bar when you decide to sell your gold bar back to a gold bullion dealer.  A gold bullion bar guaranteed and produced by a sovereign national mint such as the Royal Canadian Mint (RCM) will typically have a higher premium or slightly higher price when buying, but government guaranteed gold bars typically receive a higher buy back premium when you go to sell your gold bar back to gold dealers or other investors. Similarly, a gold bullion bar from a highly recognizable private gold mint may sell for a slightly higher premium than a smaller less recognizable private gold mint. Live buyback prices for gold bars can be found online on the corresponding product page.
For example, gold can be a volatile investment, so you shouldn't put 100% of your assets into a gold investment. The real benefit, for new and experienced investors alike, comes from the diversification that gold can offer; investors often buy gold when stock prices are falling in an attempt to protect their assets. Adding a small amount of gold to your portfolio can materially increase diversification. Although that percentage is up to you, going above 10% would probably be too much exposure unless you have a very strong conviction about the market's future direction.
Gold bullion coins come in several different sizes, providing a diverse selection. Investors of all levels can find value in Gold coins, as well as Gold bars and rounds. Whether you are buying bullion for an investment, adding to a collection, or simply hedging the market, what Gold you buy plays a major role within your portfolio, especially understanding the value of your purchase. Shop Gold bullion coins and rounds today.
As the collector market for coins grew rapidly in the late 19th century and early 20th century, it became apparent that a more precise grading standard was needed. Some coins were simply more fine than others, and some uncirculated coins showed more luster and far fewer marks than others. Terms like "gem uncirculated" and "very fine" began to see use, as more precise grading descriptions allowed for more precise pricing for the booming collector market. In 1948, a well-known numismatist by the name of Dr. William Sheldon attempted to standardized coin grading by proposing what is now known as the Sheldon Scale.

A small number of modern gold coins are also legal tender. They are not used in typical financial transactions as the value of the gold usually exceeds the nominal value of the coin. Modern investors recognize the timeless value of gold as a prime part of a diversified investment portfolio. And when investors are new to gold, the most popular size they purchase tends to be 1 oz gold coins. 
Futures contracts. Futures contracts are another way to own gold without directly taking possession of it, but it's a highly leveraged and risky choice that is inappropriate for beginners. Even experienced investors should think twice here. Essentially, a futures contract is an agreement between a buyer and a seller to exchange a specified amount of gold at a specified future date and at a specified price. As gold prices move up and down, the value of the contract fluctuates, with the accounts of the seller and buyer adjusted accordingly. Futures contracts are generally standardized and traded on exchanges, so you'd need to talk to your broker to see if it supports them. 
At the end of the day, if you choose to get your gold exposure by owning mining shares, it might be best to buy a mutual fund that focuses on precious metals companies like the aptly named Midas Fund or an ETF like Van Eck Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSEMKT:GDX). Note, however, that mutual funds and ETFs like these usually have broadly diversified portfolios that will result in exposure beyond just gold miners. That's not inherently bad, but it does change the dynamics of the investment a little bit.   
Krugerands became politically controversial during the 1970s and 1980s because of the association with an apartheid government. As a result, production of the coins varied, with levels of production increasing since 1998. The Krugerrand weighs 1.0909 troy ounces and is made from 91.67 percent pure gold (22 karats). As a result, the coin has one troy ounce of gold with the remaining weight in copper. Three sizes have been available since 1980 including ½ oz, ¼ oz, and 1/10 oz. Proof Krugerands are also available for collectors. They differ from bullion coins because the proofs have 220 serrations on the coin's edge, rather than 160.
Bullion coins appeal to investors who are looking for a physical asset that has stood the test of time as a store of value. Coins minted from precious metals have, of course, been used for thousands of years as a store of wealth and a transactional currency. With paper currencies, however, bullion coins have moved firmly into the realm of investment as opposed to being used simply as currency. In times of financial uncertainty, bullion coins tend to perform well as a safe haven. Even in times of economic stability, bullion coins generally keep their value over time.

Find a source that sells gold bullion. Often dealers, brokerage houses and banks will sell both coins and bars. When assessing a dealer, see how long they've been in business, whether they're certified with an industry or government body and in what investment activities they specialize. In the United States the national mint provides a list of authorized sellers that you can check. [2]
Sheldon's scale, included in his famous work Penny Whimsy, was originally devised specifically for United States large cents, but it is now applied to all series. The scale runs from 0 to 70, where 0 means that you can tell that it was once a coin while 70 means that it is perfect. 60 is uncirculated, what the general public would consider perfect, with no wear whatsoever. There is a direct mapping from this scale to the older descriptive terms, but they are not always used in the same way.[8][9]
GovMint.com® is a private distributor of coin and currency issues and privately licensed collectibles, and is not affiliated with the U.S. government. GovMint.com is not an investment company and does not offer financial advice. The collectible coin market is highly speculative and involves risk. You must decide for yourself if you are willing to accept these risks, including the risk that you may not be able to liquidate your purchases at prices acceptable to you. GovMint.com makes every effort to ensure facts, figures and offers are accurate; however, errors may and do occur. GovMint.com reserves the right, within its sole discretion and without prior notice to the consumer, to decline to consummate any sale based on such errors. All facts and figures, and populations of graded, autographed or pedigreed coins, are deemed accurate as of the date of publication, but may change significantly over time. GovMint.com, ModernCoinMart®, and MCM® are brands of Asset Marketing Services®. All rights reserved ©GovMint.com.
Traditionally (up to about the 1930s), gold coins have been circulation coins, including coin-like bracteates and dinars. Since recent decades, however, gold coins are mainly produced as bullion coins to investors and as commemorative coins to collectors. While modern gold coins are also legal tender, they are not observed in everyday financial transactions, as the metal value normally exceeds the nominal value. For example, the American Gold Eagle, given a denomination of 50 USD, has a metal value of more than $1,200 USD.
The weight and dimensions of a coin of .999 fineness such as the Maple Leaf cannot be replicated precisely by a gold plated tungsten core, since tungsten has only 99.74% of the specific gravity of gold. However, forgeries of alloyed gold coins (such as American gold eagle or Krugerrand made from a crown gold alloy with 22 karats = .917 fineness) may have correct the correct weight and dimensions because of the lesser density of the alloy. Such forgeries can be detected testing the acoustic, electric resistance or magnetic properties. The latter method uses the fact that gold is weakly diamagnetic and tungsten is weakly paramagnetic. The effect is weak so that testing requires strong neodymium magnets and sensitive conditions (e.g., a gold coin hanging from 2 m long pendulum or placed on styrofoam floating on water), such tests can be performed without special equipment.[22] Forgeries using gold plated tungsten are also used in counterfeiting of gold bars.
The mining sector, which includes companies that extract gold, can experience high volatility. When evaluating the dividend performance of gold stocks, consider the company's performance over time in regard to dividends. Factors such as the company's history of paying dividends and the sustainability of its dividend payout ratio are two key elements to examine in the company's balance sheet and other financial statements. A company's ability to sustain healthy dividend payouts is greatly enhanced if it has consistently low debt levels and strong cash flows, and the historical trend of the company's performance shows steadily improving debt and cash flow figures. Since any company goes through growth and expansion cycles when it takes on more debt and has a lower cash on hand balance, it's imperative to analyze their long-term figures rather than a shorter financial picture timeframe.
Investment Grade Coins are higher quality and more rare than bullion coins. These coins are also graded and are enclosed in a protective slab to ensure and preserve the condition of the coin. A study commissioned by the U.S. Congress has proven that certain Investment Grade Coins are shown to have an annual return of 15%. Investment Grade Coins are for investors planning to hold onto their investment for at least 3 years.

Holds its value. Gold tends to maintain its value over time. Economists argue that even the price of gold is not indicative of its value. That is, even if the price decreases, the underlying value of gold does not change much. This is largely because there is a fixed quantity of gold due to the fact that it is a commodity, whereas the U.S. dollar, which is a form of fiat currency, holds no inherent value.
A. Over the past few years, as concern about a financial and economic breakdown spread, there were periods of gold coin bottlenecks and actual shortages. In 2008-2009 at the height of the financial crisis, demand was so great that the national mints could not keep up with it. The flow of historic gold coins from Europe was also insufficient to meet accelerating demand both there and in the United States. Premiums shot-up on all gold and silver coins and a scramble developed for what was available. There is an old saying that the best time to buy gold is when everything is quiet. I would underline that sentiment.
The best places to get information for investing in gold bullion would be our “Investor Info” tab at the top of this page. There you will find more information about not just gold investing, but also investing in silver and palladium. You will also be able to subscribe to our Precious Metals Review (PMR) and our Gold Value Insights. Both of these subscriptions help to keep you informed on up-to-date information on the precious metals markets.
Many banks offer gold accounts where gold can be instantly bought or sold just like any foreign currency on a fractional reserve basis.[citation needed] Swiss banks offer similar service on a fully allocated basis. Pool accounts, such as those offered by some providers, facilitate highly liquid but unallocated claims on gold owned by the company. Digital gold currency systems operate like pool accounts and additionally allow the direct transfer of fungible gold between members of the service. Other operators, by contrast, allows clients to create a bailment on allocated (non-fungible) gold, which becomes the legal property of the buyer.
Unlike paper currency that is issued by governments and central banks, silver is backed up by the physical metal itself — and it can be transacted anywhere in the world. In other words, it is a hard and tangible asset. This is what makes silver and other precious metals so attractive. In addition, silver has only a finite supply, which is why the laws of supply and demand are a key factor in precious metals investments today.
An important way to examine the relationship between assets is by looking at correlations. Effectively, how do two investments move in relation to each other. For example, the correlation between the entire stock market and just the midcap segment over the past 10 years or so is roughly 0.98. That means they move in virtual lockstep, as you might logically expect. Gold, however, has a correlation with the stock market of 0.04 over that same span. Essentially, gold does its own thing. 
Answer. The biggest trap investors fall into is buying a gold investment that bears little or no relationship to his or her objectives. Take safe-haven investors for example. That group makes up 90% of our clientele, and probably a good 75% of the current physical gold market. Most often the safe-haven investor simply wants to add gold coins to his or her portfolio mix, but too often this same investor ends up instead with a leveraged (financed) gold position, or a handful of exotic rare coins, or a position in an ETF that amounts to little more than a bet on the gold price. These have little to do with safe-haven investing, and most investors would be well-served to avoid them.
The content on MoneyCrashers.com is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as professional financial advice. Should you need such advice, consult a licensed financial or tax advisor. References to products, offers, and rates from third party sites often change. While we do our best to keep these updated, numbers stated on this site may differ from actual numbers. We may have financial relationships with some of the companies mentioned on this website. Among other things, we may receive free products, services, and/or monetary compensation in exchange for featured placement of sponsored products or services. We strive to write accurate and genuine reviews and articles, and all views and opinions expressed are solely those of the authors.
The Gold price forecast is determined differently than most other investments. Stocks and commodities are evaluated as news about each company is released, or when cost changes occur in the manufacturing supply chain. Gold, however, has inherent value, which is not affected by turnovers in upper management or fuel costs. Economists use many factors when predicting Gold prices, including global inflation rates, trade imbalances between the United States and other countries, and the holdings of major central banks around the world. Expectations about higher interest rates and inflation have an impact on the Gold price forecast, as well. Supply and availability can impact some estimates, although when demand increases, many sellers become eager to recycle their existing supply.

At the end of the day, if you choose to get your gold exposure by owning mining shares, it might be best to buy a mutual fund that focuses on precious metals companies like the aptly named Midas Fund or an ETF like Van Eck Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSEMKT:GDX). Note, however, that mutual funds and ETFs like these usually have broadly diversified portfolios that will result in exposure beyond just gold miners. That's not inherently bad, but it does change the dynamics of the investment a little bit.   


Precious metals investments have always been the target of counterfitters looking to make a quick buck. To battle this issue, many mints implement unique markers and counterfeit-proof measures, like Sunshine Minting’s Mint Mark SI™ feature and the micro-graving done by the Royal Canadian Mint. As the counterfeiting is punishable by law and usually carries a heavy prison sentence and fines, legal tender coins are considered a comparatively safer option as their legal tender status acts as a successful deterrent in most cases.
Gold certificates are usually for unallocated gold, which means there's no specific gold associated with the certificate even though the company says it has enough gold to back all outstanding certificates. You can buy allocated gold certificates, where the certificates represent specific gold bullion, but the costs are higher. The big problem here is that the certificates are really only as good as the company backing them, sort of like banks before FDIC insurance was created. This is why one of the most desirable options for gold certificates is the Perth Mint, which is backed by the government of Western Australia. That said, if you are going to simply buy a paper representation of gold, you might want to consider exchange-traded funds instead. 
As the collector market for coins grew rapidly in the late 19th century and early 20th century, it became apparent that a more precise grading standard was needed. Some coins were simply more fine than others, and some uncirculated coins showed more luster and far fewer marks than others. Terms like "gem uncirculated" and "very fine" began to see use, as more precise grading descriptions allowed for more precise pricing for the booming collector market. In 1948, a well-known numismatist by the name of Dr. William Sheldon attempted to standardized coin grading by proposing what is now known as the Sheldon Scale.
Gold bullion bars are typically the lowest gold buying price option when investing in physical gold bullion. The most popular gold bar sizes are the 1 oz gold bar, 10 oz gold bar, and 1 kilo gold bar. Gold bullion bars can be minted from government gold mints like the Royal Canadian Mint (RCM) or private gold mints such as the highly recognized Sunshine Minting Inc. Buying gold bars is a popular investment for both new and experienced physical precious metal investors and long term gold bullion savers.
Leveraged Investment Scams – Leveraged investments are high-risk investments that can result in the loss of even more money than you originally invested. Typically, in a leveraged investment scam, a telemarketer or website will state that the price of metal is about to skyrocket and that you can make significant profits by making a small down payment for the metal, often as low as 20 percent. According to the marketer, by paying only 20 percent of the purchase price, you can get more metal than if you had to pay 100 percent of the purchase price.

Although governments have decided it's easier to be off the gold standard than on it, that doesn't change the central issue that backs gold's intrinsic value and safe-haven status: There's only so much gold in the world. The gold that's above ground being used in some fashion is estimated to be around 190,000 metric tons. The amount of gold in the ground that can be economically mined today is notably less, at roughly 54,000 metric tons.    


Buying Silver bars is one of the most cost effective, safest and easiest ways to own physical Silver. Silver bars are the bullion of choice for many investors because they cost less over Silver spot price than Silver coins. Additionally, their uniform shape and size mean Silver bars are easy to store, count and transfer. APMEX sells Silver bars produced by Sunshine Mint, PAMP Suisse, RCM, Johnson Matthey and other respected Silver mints. Each Silver bar is stamped with its exact Silver weight, fineness, and a serial number for added security.
South Africa introduced the Krugerrand in 1967 to cater to this market; this was the reason for its convenient and memorable gold content – exactly one troy ounce. It was the first modern, low-premium (i.e. priced only slightly above the bullion value of the gold) gold bullion coin. Bullion coins are also produced in fractions of an ounce – typically half ounce, quarter ounce, and one-tenth ounce. Bullion coins sometimes carry a face value as legal tender. The face value is minted on the coin, and it is done so in order to bestow legal tender status on a coin, which generally makes it easier to import or export across national borders, as well as subject to laws against counterfeiting. However, their real value is measured as dictated by their troy weight, the current market price of the precious metal contained, and the prevailing premium that market wishes to pay for those particular bullion coins. The face value is always significantly less than the bullion value of the coin. Legal tender bullion coins are a separate entity to bullion gold. One enjoys legal tender status, the latter is merely a raw commodity. Gold has an international currency code of XAU under ISO 4217. ISO 4217 includes codes not only for currencies, but also for precious metals (gold, silver, palladium and platinum; by definition expressed per one troy ounce.
Where can I buy Silver bullion? APMEX deals in top-quality Silver bullion, coins and rounds. Silver bullion is one of the easiest and most cost-effective Precious Metals investments one can make. Begin today by browsing APMEX's unparalleled inventory of Silver bullion. Interested in learning how to invest in Silver? We provide up-to-date information about the ins and outs of investing in Silver.
Gold maintains a special position in the market with many tax regimes. For example, in the European Union the trading of recognised gold coins and bullion products are free of VAT. Silver and other precious metals or commodities do not have the same allowance. Other taxes such as capital gains tax may also apply for individuals depending on their tax residency. U.S. citizens may be taxed on their gold profits at collectibles or capital gains rates, depending on the investment vehicle used.[61]
Queen's Beast Silver Coins: The Royal Mint's Queen's Beast Silver Coin program includes 10 designs with each one representing a different heraldic beast from the history of England's royal monarchs. Each design is available as a .9999 pure silver bullion coins or .999 pure silver proof coin with a 2 oz silver weight in the bullion version or 1 oz, 5 oz, 10 oz, and 1 kilo options in proof.
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