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Gold and Silver Investment

All fans of the old spaghetti-style western movies would remember the film – “The good, the bad, and the ugly”. Speculative investors often invest in a typical cowboy style without understanding the dynamics of the market. In a world where online gold dealers are becoming increasingly popular, savvy investors need to be aware of the pitfalls of this market. In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of gold and silver investing and also look at a few novice pitfalls which could leave your investment stranded, if you’re not careful.

The pros of investing in gold and silver (‘The Good’)

While gold and silver has been used as a medium of exchange in the past, coins and bars are now bought and sold as an investment. Buying real physical gold (as opposed to paper or electronic), offers a unique, intrinsically valued asset  which can rise in value and provide balance to a portfolio.

Established market

The Internet and the information age has created transparency across the globe when it comes to gold and silver prices. It doesn’t matter whether you’re based out of Honolulu or Hokkaido, spot prices of gold and silver are easily available for all investors to browse before buying or selling. There are plenty of reputed online gold dealers who would guarantee your purchases and industry bodies like the LBMA or the BNTA are regulating the market at all times. This creates a level playing field for all investors to be able to invest their money safely.

Gold and Silver Investment

Physical gold is an investment that stands the test of time

Verifiable assets

For investors in the UK, the London bullion market has created a system by which all gold bars in their system are verifiable, starting with the manufacturer, the assayer through to storage facilities in which the bars are held in LBMA recognised vaults. Through these best practices, the gold industry has reduced the risk of counterfeit bars entering the system. In a similar manner, the silver industry is also well regulated, providing investors with a transparent market where their money is safe as long as they’re dealing with registered, reputed brokers and dealers.


Download our FREE Insiders Guide to Tax Efficient Gold and Silver Investing here


Unique hedge against inflation and recession

Precious metals like gold and silver are an excellent hedge against economic turmoil and inflation. The prices of gold and silver have remained relatively stable over the years and are not affected by volatility in the way that other asset classes are. All of this makes investments in gold and silver worthwhile in the long run. Owning gold or silver will likely reduce your overall financial risk as their value tends to rise when mainstream assets fall. In other words, gold and silver investment thrives during times of economic turmoil.

Disadvantages of gold and silver investing (‘The Bad’)

There are possible downsides to every investment and gold and silver have their possible disadvantages too. It’s always important to assess every investment opportunity on it’s merits and judge it based on your investment objectives and priorities.

No income from owning coins or bars

Once an investor purchases gold or silver in its physical form, he/she cannot make an income out of this investment unless the asset is sold. Certain investments in gold and silver are tax-free in the UK, however the same does not apply to the rest of the world. Of course, there are ups and downs in the spot prices of gold and these asset classes cannot be used to make quick money. Investors need to remain invested over the long-term in order to reap benefits from their investments.

Don’t buy the wrong type of gold

Buying gold and silver jewellery is not ideal as making charges and wasted charges are deducted from the sale price. Since the prices of gold and silver do not rise quickly, these deductions could erode whatever returns you have made on your purchase. Only investment grade gold is VAT-exempt, so ensure you are buying bars and coins of 22 karats and higher only.

Buying gold or silver coins with huge premiums or in expensive packaging can also negatively impact your investment returns, so be sure to research the best coins for investment in your country. A good precious metals dealer should be able to provide guidance.

Costs to buying, selling and storing

The spread between the price you pay when buying and selling is higher when dealing with physical silver and gold than with electronic assets. The cost of manufacturing and distribution means that the market has to move up more with gold and silver investing to make a profit than trading stocks.

Another downside of investing in gold and silver is that you need secure storage. It may not be safe to store precious metals inside your home, especially if you have a large amount.

Professional storage solutions are available, for example, Physical Gold stores their client’s purchases in an LBMA approved vault. However, there are costs attached to this and this and needs to be factored into the overall price.

The downright ugly

Trading in the precious metals markets requires you to be a savvy investor and have good knowledge of the market, especially when it comes to identifying genuine gold and silver. While there are accessories available in the market that can help you do that, you do require experience and specialised knowledge to be able to tell whether a bar or a coin is counterfeit. There are plenty of rogue traders out there and that’s the ugly part. Many in investors often fall for the lure of advertising and end up dealing with one of these rogue traders. Needless to say, their purchases are often fake and by the time the end up realising that, the money is all gone.

As a precious metals investor, you need to deal with a reputed online broker at all times. The BNTA website has a full list of registered traders. Physical Gold is proud to be an authorised BNTA trader and has a long track record in the market, with thousands of customers who had a great experience with us.

Don’t fall for the bad and the ugly

Talk to our precious metals experts at Physical Gold today and they will advise you on the best way to invest in gold and silver. Our investment experts take into account your investment goals, your personal profile and your investable capital. They use this information to advise you on the best way to build up a precious metals portfolio at the best prices in the market. Call us today on 020 7060 9992 or get in touch with us online to speak to a member of the team.

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Silver investing now and in the coming years

In this video, we’ll take a look at silver’s prospects for 2020 and beyond. Over the past 5 years, interest in silver has grown exponentially to the point where we now get almost as many silver enquiries as gold.

So is silver a worthwhile investment in 2022 and beyond, and what can we expect from it, we examine silver investing in 2022?

I’d like to start by looking at downside risk. The silver price fell from around £13 an ounce at the start of 2017, to £12.50/oz the following year, and nearer to £12 an ounce in 2019. Clearly, the prospect of owning a depreciating asset is unappealing.

Downside risk

However, unlike gold, silver’s demand consists predominantly from industrial use. As the world’s most conductive material, silver is used in most electronic components, solar panels, photography and medicines. The digital age is only going to develop over the coming years, creating new electronic demands on silver. The search for alternative energy will lead to increasing silver demand with electric cars and electric solar energy. So with industrial demand rising, downside risk to silver is minimal.

Gold-Silver ratio

It’s also fair to say that the silver price has suffered far worse in recent years than the gold price, with clear suggestions that it’s been oversold. The ratio between the two metals’ prices has widened from a long term average of 47:1 to 70:1 a few years ago, and now an incredible 95:1.

This theme may scare inexperienced investors, but this would suggest a buying opportunity in 2022 for silver. If you can lock in prices when the silver price is so low, your upside becomes magnified.  The silver market is far smaller than that of gold, so prices can be more volatile. It also means that the price can move up in percentage terms far quicker and far greater.

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Global economy

The silver price could well receive a double boost over the coming years.

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As well as the rising industrial demand, there’s plenty of uncertainty in the global economy to boost silver as a safe haven. 2019 and beyond marked a turn in the economic cycle. The middle of 2018 saw property prices begin to fall and global stock markets start to decline from their 9-year bull run. After nearly a decade of rising stock and property prices, the global economy is set for a big correction, especially with interest rates now on the rise. Throw in Brexit and a growing car leasing credit bubble, and safe havens could well become the flavour of the month once again. Gold will likely rise first, with silver following behind. But once silver starts its upward trend, the pace of increase will outstrip that of gold.

Diversify

A lot of investors ask me whether they should buy gold or silver. After all the two metals are quite different. For me, there’s a strong case to own both. Diversification is key in today’s digital globalised economy, so investing in silver and gold is a great way to hedge your hedge!

Now tax free

By sticking to Silver Britannia coins, any profit you make is also free from Capital Gains Tax!

Silver investing in 2020 with Physical Gold Ltd

So there you have it. 2020 and beyond are set to be exciting years for silver investing. Courage may be needed to enter a market which has fallen in value, but history will tell you, that’s the exact time to stack your claim.

If you feel silver could play a role in your investment portfolio, or you simply want to buy some silver coins or bars, then don’t hesitate to call our team of experts on 020 7060 9992 for any guidance you need.

I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s video. If so, please check out all 20 videos in the gold & silver investment guide series.

What are fractional gold coins?

The term fractional gold refers to coins that have less than one troy ounce of gold in them. Most numismatists will tell you that coin releases undertaken by large mints around the world include sizes that have less than one troy ounce of gold. The one exception may be the world-renowned Sovereign coin which weighs approximately a quarter of an ounce. Being a ‘full’ Sovereign, it tends not to be referred to as fractional.

When we think about it, it seems like an awfully small amount of gold. So, why should anyone want to invest in fractional gold? Are there any advantages or disadvantages? Why is fractional gold considered to be a hot investment category?

In this article, we will discuss the pros and cons related to buying fractional gold.

What type of fractional gold coins are available?

Most major precious metals mints will produce fractional versions of their flagship one ounce gold coin. Examples of well-known fractional coins from around the world are Krugerrands, Maple Leaf coins, Philharmonics, Eagles and Nuggets. Alongside the 1oz gold coin, there will usually be versions made in half ounce, quarter ounce and tenth ounce weights. Some mints even produce tiny 1/20 oz fractional gold coin. Usually, mintage volumes of fractional coins are far lower than the original 1oz version.

For UK investors seeking to be tax efficient and buy UK coins, there are a number of fractional UK gold coins available.

Pros of investing in fractional gold

Its worth considering buying fractional gold coins  for several reasons. With gold’s popularity with retail investors growing each year, demand for smaller fractional coins is also increasing. Their many benefits appeal to smaller investors and collectors and mints have responded by producing more fractional coin varieties.

Price

Well, the simplest factor that comes to mind is, of course, the price of the gold. Needless to say, larger and heavier coins are way more expensive. If you’re a numismatist or a hobbyist, you may not want to commit very large sums of money while spending on building your collection. Fractional gold coins allow you to build a collection without breaking the bank.


Download our FREE 7 step cheatsheet to buying gold coins here


Ideal and affordable gifts

Buying gold for a loved one as a gift is becoming more popular as it’s a thoughtful gift which is aesthetically appealing and interesting. With one-ounce gold coins costing upwards of £1,600, these coins can prove too expensive for most gift buyers. The fractional gold coin versions offer the ideal affordable gift option for birthdays, Christmas and special events.

Building your own collection

Building your collection from scratch can be an absorbing experience. So, that’s all the more reason why you need to get more bang for the buck. Investing in fractional gold coins will mean that you’re buying your bullion in smaller sizes and can, therefore, acquire more for the same price. If you keep at it, over and over the years, your collection will grow and you could have a formidable gold coin collection.

Investing in Fractional Gold

Fractional coins have less than an ounce of gold

Trading in your gold coins

Many collectors frequently sell a few gold coins for a bit of liquidity and cash flow. Fractional gold coins are ideal for this purpose, as it is possible to trade in them without selling off the more expensive coins from your collection. This is why some collectors like to invest in fractional gold coins.

Easy liquidity

Numismatists all over the world are constantly on the lookout for trading opportunities that can help them acquire better coins for their collections. In terms of liquidity, fractional gold coins are great as they offer good bartering opportunities, which is not always possible with gold coins that contain a higher amount of gold, with a larger value.

Cashing in on the higher demand for gold

As the price of gold rises, the value of your fractional gold coins is also likely to increase. As discussed earlier, fractional gold coins are typically cheaper to buy and so, investors looking to make quick returns from the price of gold would buy these coins when the price of gold falls. Later on, as the price rises, they can cash in these coins and get quick returns.

Investing in Fractional Gold

Many investors like to trade in fractional coins due to its price advantage

Hedging against the risk of economic uncertainty

Gold investors are always looking to hedge their risks in the event of a global economic crash. However, liquidity is also an important factor. In the event of a global economic meltdown, most investors would move to gold and the price of gold would rise swiftly, as it did in 2011. At a time like this, if an investor wants to free up some of their capital, fractional coins are ideal as they can be sold to raise funds for smaller purchases. Selling a large amount of gold is not always ideal as the investor may not want to liquidate large amounts of gold, when not required.

Disadvantages of investing in fractional gold coins

Although it might seem that
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investing in fractional gold coins is a smart idea for investors, these investments also carry certain risks.

Higher mark-up price

As mints produce large amounts of gold coins, their setup cost for manufacturing these are typically more expensive when it comes to producing gold coins that contain less than an ounce of gold. Usually, 1-ounce gold coins are available at the best price. Therefore, fractional gold coins would always have a higher mark-up price when compared to other gold coins produced by the same mint.

Premium prices

Mints often charge mark-up’s that range between 9 to 15% on fractional gold coins. Many investors see this as an undesirable factor, as the mark-up is not recoverable when trading in the coins.

Talk to our gold experts before you buy fractional gold coins

At Physical Gold, our gold experts have many years of experience in being able to advise investors on products that are ideal for building a gold portfolio, while maximising the opportunity to invest at the best possible capital layout. Call us now on 020 7060 9992 or get in touch with us online to speak with a member of our team. We would always be happy to discuss your investment plans with you and advise you on the best products that suit your investment goals, no matter how small your requirement.

 

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Different gold alloys

The chemistry of gold makes it a unique element in the world, such that there is none like it that can be found. Many of us learnt during high school chemistry lessons that the chemical symbol of gold is Au. Gold has an atomic number of 79, which simply means that each atom of the precious metal contains 79 protons within its nucleus. The unique colour of gold, however, is not dependent on the atoms, as the colour of a metal is dependent on how electrons behave between energy bands. In the case of gold, its unique colour is based on these transitions which give the metal an unmistakable, alluring, warm lustre that humans have found irresistible for centuries.

The unique properties of gold

The purity of gold is indicated by the karat number the metal possesses. When gold is fused into an alloy with other metals, its purity decreases, as does its karat number. So, 14 karat gold has a far greater proportion of base metals than 24 karat gold, which has a purity of 999.9. Now, that leads us to an interesting question. Why is gold formed into an alloy with other metals? In reality, this has a lot to do with its usage. Gold is commonly used in making jewellery. In order to use gold to carefully craft the intricate designs of jewels, the metal needs to undergo certain changes that make the substance easier to work with.

What Alloys are Commonly Mixed with Gold?

Gold is often melted and fused with other metals to form alloys with unique properties

For example, we know that pure gold is extremely soft and malleable. This means that if we manufacture jewellery using 24 karats pure gold, the products would never retain their shapes. On the other hand, pure gold is also ductile. Believe it or not, one ounce of gold can be pulled into 80 km of gold wire with a thickness of 5 microns. So, in order to make it more usable and durable, certain base metals need to be added to gold to harden it. So, as a savvy gold investor, you need to know and understand the different types of gold. Understanding its composition gives us greater insight into its characteristics and industrial usage.
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The different faces of gold

The creation of gold alloys greatly affects the properties of the precious metal, which is why it’s a useful technique that has been around for years. Important properties like the colour, melting point, ductility or malleability of gold can be altered by simply adding other metals into the mix. When we add base metals like zinc, cadmium or tin, the melting point of gold is reduced substantially.

Gold has a melting point of 1063 degrees Celsius. Due to the reduction of the melting point, savings in energy costs are achieved. On the other hand, adding platinum or nickel increases the hardness of the alloy. This is essential for jewellery manufacturers, as pure gold is too soft to work with. By hardening the surface, the jewellery also becomes scratch-resistant, which is an added advantage.

What Alloys are Commonly Mixed with Gold?

White gold is plated with rhodium in order to make it attractive

Changes in colour

Gold jewellery now comes in a range of fantastic colours. These colour effects are created by adding copper, palladium, silver or nickel in accurate proportions. Since these metals each have their own properties, they are able to create different hues when fused with gold. Popular gold shades like green, grey or white gold are created in this manner. An interesting example is white gold. This is created by adding rhodium. The combination not only creates a white lustre, it also makes the surface much harder, making it scratch proof. The gold-titanium alloy is another example of an innovative alloy used to make wedding rings. In this alloy, only 1% of titanium is introduced, which is enough to make it really strong and creates a lovely shimmer, along with a grey tone.


Download our FREE 7 Step cheat sheet to buying the best type of gold for investment here


Call our gold experts to find out about different types of gold

At Physical Gold, our gold experts are able to guide customers on every type of gold there is in the market. We advise customers just like you on making investments in precious metals every day. We are a reputed online gold and silver broker and all our products are sold with a certificate that guarantees its genuineness as well as a buyback promise. Call our team now on 020 7060 9992 or drop us an email and a member of our team will get in touch right away.

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Is it a good time to buy gold as an investment?

The phrase we hear more often than any is; “Is now a good time to buy gold?”. I’ll address that in this update.

One good phrase for timing the gold market is; “Its not the timing of the market, but time in the market”. Trying to buy at the bottom and sell at the top may sound like a wise strategy, but in reality it’s impossible and can lead to reducing your returns and security. The fact is that holding gold over the long term has proven over the years to provide a secure storage of wealth and outperform inflation.

But I don’t want to just beat inflation, I want big returns…..

It’s human nature to want to beat inflation by a large margin and gain more substantial returns. So timing in and out of the market plays a role in achieving this.

Good time to buy gold

Add gold to your portfolio

While it’s impossible to predict the future, despite many so-called market experts making gold price predictions, timing is about stacking the odds in your favour. This means you look at market fundamentals and choose to invest in assets which look most likely to perform well.

While allocating your money into different asset classes is always recommended, it’s fair to say that now seems like a good time to buy gold.

Because gold has such a long history, we’re able to see how gold has performed before to help predict how it might perform over the next few years.

The gold price has almost always risen in times of severe economic downturns.

Are we heading into an economic downturn?

Even before the pandemic, markets were overheated and global debt at record highs. Since Covid took hold, Governments around the world have opted to print more fiat money to support their suffering communities in the form of furlough support. Now, nearly 2 years on from the start, there seems to be a lethal cocktail mixing which could lead to the mother of all recessions.

Physical Gold Counterparty Risk

With financial markets, there is always an element of counterparty risk

The following ingredients are now in play;

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How is gold supply and demand at the moment?

During the height of the pandemic, we saw enquiries increase around 700% year on year. That initial rush has calmed, but demand from new investors now seeking the security and protection gold offers as a safe haven, continues to grow. Overall demand remains above pre-pandemic levels and we expect this to rise as recession kicks in.

Institutional money will also increase gold holdings as many competing asset classes suffer. They will look to move allocations out of stocks, bonds and cash, and into gold.

And gold supply….?

Supply of new coins and bars is managing to keep pace with demand. However, due to very few gold holders wishing to sell, we still see huge shortages in the secondary market. It has now been 2 years since we saw decent amounts of sellers in the markets. With the looming economic difficulties ahead, I can’t envisage this changing anytime soon. Premiums on many gold coins are increasing.

Good time to buy gold?

Shortage of pre-owned gold coins

Where is the gold price?

As of the time of writing (November 2021), the gold price is moving upwards. It remains more than 10% below it’s all time high in 2020, but has gained around 8% in the past month, as momentum builds.

This was expected as we moved out of the furlough support and inflation began to take hold. While we can’t predict with certainty where the gold price will move in the short term, it seems that now represents good value.

With all these elements working together and interest rates likely to rise for the first time in a decade, it seems like now is a good time to be buying gold.

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Why buy physical gold rather than gold funds?

Investing in physical gold coins and bars is one of the most popular ways of buying gold. There are other options, ranging from gold funds and gold ETFs, to buying individual gold mining stocks or electronic fractional ownership of pooled gold.

It’s important to understand that the right choice when buying gold will depend on your objectives and circumstances. Generally speaking, if you want the most secure and trustworthy of owning gold, then buying physical gold coins and bars is the only method to achieve that. If you’re seeking to buy and sell gold often and trade the market, then electronic versions can be more cost efficient, albeit more risky.

Here we break down the considerations when considering why to buy physical gold.

1. Security and Integrity

While ETFs have provided an accessible way for investors to gain exposure to the gold market there are many fears circulating about their security and integrity. For starters, the fact it is a structured paper asset that not everyone fully understands tends to defeat the object of owning a simple tangible asset like gold. So many investors have been stung over the past 5 years investing into asset-backed securities that were rated AAA by the credit rating agencies, only to see them downgraded to junk status overnight when everyone realised that the subprime mortgages they were linked to would not payout. It transpired that many very sophisticated investors never really knew which assets the bond was linked to or understood their lack of protection against such defaults. So are you more comfortable understanding the risks of holding gold coins or gold funds or ETFs?

Press reports are speculating that only 10% of the traded ETF value is backed by actual gold. With a distinct lack of auditing, its difficult to know for sure what the exact figure is.

Jefferey Christian of the CPM Group confirmed that gold is leveraged around 100:1 at a Commodities Futures Trade Commission (CFTC) Hearing on March 26, 2010. This means that there are around 100 claims for each ounce of gold in existence and so not enough gold to be delivered to everyone who has been promised paper gold.

So the question remains would you be able to access the value of your ETF if half or more of the investors decided to withdraw at the same time?


Want your gold questions answered? Download our FREE Ultimate Guide to gold investment here


2. Counterparty Risk

The term counterparty risk has become far more used and relevant over the past few

PHYS01_Animated_Gif_2_MPUyears. This term didn’t seem relevant to bank deposits a decade ago it went without saying that leaving savings in a high street bank was safe. But things have changed dramatically. Now we’ve seen our major high street banks on the brink of collapse. Who would have believed me 15 years ago if I’d have predicted that RBS, Nat West and Lloyds would be mostly Government owned?

The 2008 credit crunch saw bankruptcies to seriously major corporations from General Motors to Lehman Brothers. I saw many friends who had built up shares in Lehmans over many years of work and anticipated those stocks providing their retirement. No-one could have predicted that they would lose value so quickly and Lehman would go under.

We then saw the next phase of counterparty risk with Sovereign debt. Investors who thought they were taking on very little risk by investing in Government bonds faced the very real prospect of not being paid out in full. Countries such as Ireland, Greece, Portugal and Spain need help from the EU and IMF to repay their debts. There is every chance that bondholders will not receive all the capital back.

And now, in the new Covid world, Government debt is at record highs and corporations are struggling to adapt and survive under the new world parameters.

With physical gold, there is NO counterparty risk. It doesn’t matter if a Government fails to repay bonds, a corporation goes bankrupt or even if the gold dealer you bought the gold from ceases trading. You will always have the physical asset to do with as you like.

By investing in gold mining stock, ETF or Gold funds each poses some sort of counterparty exposure and a threat to the value of your asset. Remember paper gold is a promise to pay, not the real thing!

3. Risk Profile

If you’re considering a choice between mining stocks and physical gold, its crucial to realise that these are different asset classes with entirely different risk profiles. Firstly, investing in mining stocks means your investment is linked to the performance of one company. As a paper asset, if that company underperforms, or even worse goes bankrupt, there is a chance that your investment becomes worthless. The value of gold coins and bars can never fall to zero or anywhere near because of the intrinsic gold content. During times of global economic turmoil mining stocks and bullion perform quite differently. Terror threats, currency depreciations, huge unemployment, record deficits and banking crises don’t provide conducive conditions for equity markets, which is why we’ve seen more and more people fleeing to the safety of gold bars and coins. Generally, while mining stocks have the potential for impressive returns they tend not to outperform physical gold during times of crisis such as the recent credit crunch. During sharp market declines such as the 1987 stock market crash, mining stocks become correlated to the broad equity markets rather than the price of bullion.

4. Comprehensive Insurance

If the reason you want to invest in gold is for portfolio insurance then make sure you have a Comprehensive policy! Everyone knows that gold provides security against economic and political unrest, making it the perfect safe haven asset in the current world in which we live. In that case, you want this wealth protection to be thorough. By investing in paper gold its like buying an insurance policy with get-out clauses. In other words, it doesn’t provide full coverage. There are still risks attached such as counterparty risk. By investing into physical gold, its like having the most comprehensive insurance available, putting your mind at rest that no matter what the next financial headline is, your physical gold holding will provide the necessary balance.

Insider's Guide to gold and silver

5. Tax Efficiency

In the UK, there is the opportunity to own physical gold coins which are completely tax-free. All investment grade gold is VAT exempt. You pay no income tax while holding the gold and UK coins such as the Britannia and Sovereign are Capital Gains Tax-free due to their status as legal tender. Compare this to paper gold such as a mining stock or gold funds where you’ll have to pay income tax on any dividends and capital gains tax if you sell the shares at a profit. With CGT now up to 28% for higher rate taxpayers, that’s nearly a third of your profits!

6. Accessibility

Accessibility in times of crisis is crucial. After all, gold should act as your crisis hedge. Over the past month, we’ve read about the attempted ink-cartridge bombers and MI5 revealing renewed threats to the UK, France and Germany. The Eiffel Tower has been evacuated twice in recent months. If one of these attempts gets through and the financial system collapses for a week or so how easy is it to access funds through your gold ETF, mining shares or Gold funds? By holding the physical metal itself, especially in the form of globally recognised coins, you hold the ultimate liquidity.

Gold Information

Live Gold Spot Price in Sterling. Gold is one of the densest of all metals. It is a good conductor of heat and electricity. It is also soft and the most malleable and ductile of the elements; an ounce (31.1 grams; gold is weighed in troy ounces) can be beaten out to 187 square feet (about 17 square metres) in extremely thin sheets called gold leaf.

Silver Information

Live Silver Spot Price in Sterling. Silver (Ag), chemical element, a white lustrous metal valued for its decorative beauty and electrical conductivity. Silver is located in Group 11 (Ib) and Period 5 of the periodic table, between copper (Period 4) and gold (Period 6), and its physical and chemical properties are intermediate between those two metals.