For those of you who have heard me mention buying gold and silver over the past few years or read my articles here suggesting it as a possible diversification of inflation risk, I thought I would share a few ways for regular people like us to buy gold and silver at reasonable markups.
First off – much of the metal being sold online at Ebay appears to be overpriced. Therefore, the first thing you should check is the current day’s SPOT PRICE for metals. An easy way is here:
Now that you are armed with that data, you can be assured of buying at a fair price. If you would like to purchase in person, you can consider bullion dealers approved by the US Mint to handle American Eagle gold and silver bullion sales. You buy collectible quality coins directly from the mint – bullion or metal bought for investment – is purchased through their dealer network. Go to the US Mint site to locate a local bullion dealer:
if you prefer to buy over the internet or phone, many fine dealers are available. I have had a good experience dealing with the following firm:
But they are by no means the only good one. You can find other good ones with research. Expect to pay $40-60 over the spot price for 1 ounce of gold – typically, premiums on US Eagles are higher than foreign coins such as the Austrian “Philharmonic” or the Chinese “Pandas.” This is due to their higher desirability in the US (and perceived higher liquidity) and their potentially favorable privacy advantages. Silver coins often have a premium of $2 per coin (especially for eagles) and therefore, buying an equal dollar amount of gold vs silver can have different premium costs. It may make sense to buy more in bulk with silver. You can also consider platinum and palladium for metals diversification – beware though that platinum and palladium have industrial uses and tend to react more to economic trends whereas gold tends to react to safety or inflation concerns (stagflation could be better for gold than platinum whereas global growth could be better for platinum than gold). Some people like silver as a good hybrid of precious metal as money and as an industrial metal. Which way to go though, is for you to decide.
I am not discussing collectible coins please note. I have no expertise in that area. I am simply discussing owning bullion as an investment purely for the value of the metal.
If you have any good points to share, please do – I would enjoy hearing from you. However, I will not give personal advice on this, and this article should not be perceived as personal advice but as helpful education. please consult your own advisor for the appropriateness of you investing in metals.