Gold and silver bullion were approved as holding in Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) in 1997. Prior to 1997, the only forms of silver or gold approved to be held in IRAs were the American gold eagle coins and silver eagle coins.
In our current economic environment, gold and silver bullion coins or bars make excellent and smart investment options for the wise investor. Unlike the much higher priced, older dated numismatic coins, gold and silver bullion coins and bars sell for much closer to the value of their metal content. Due to the reduced cost of mass manufacturing and the lower cost of fabrication and distribution of non graded coins and bars carry a much smaller premium than numismatic coins. Coins and bars are usually more in demand as they are easily recognized and come in forms that are very easy and convenient to purchase and exchange.
There are two slight differences between gold silver glass and silver bullion coins and bars. Bullions coins are usually round. Most standard round shaped coins are produced at government mints and often carry more legal tender values. If a coin is deemed legal tender by a given country, it is actually part of that country’s currency and is backed by the government itself. This government backing often gives investors a greater comfort level knowing that a government stands behind the coins themselves. This also serves as a deterrent to wood be counterfeiters knowing how seep the penalties are to counterfeiting government currency.
On the other side of the coin so to speak, bullion bars are often rectangular in shape and are usually produced by countless private mints and thus they do not hold legal tender values. Yes, the bullion bars are often 99.999 pure gold or silver, so it can be the exact same metal as in a legal tender coin, it’s just not backed by a government and is not legal currency. Often the smaller size bars make fine investments. The larger in size a bar is, the greater likely hood it will need to be assayed when it is sold. Counterfeiters will sometimes drill out large bars and fill them with a cheap metal, and then cover up the hole with real gold and silver. By drilling them, experts can determine if they are pure, or not. The seller of the bars is often the one to have to pay for the assay.
Over the last century, silver and gold have emerged as very popular ways of investing in precious metals, because of the uniformity in size which makes it pretty easy to handle and very convenient for storage purposes. Silver is often referred to as the poor man’s gold. Because these metals are compact, it makes it easier for investors to secure a great deal, and makes it easy to convert to cash. The most common size gold and silver bars are the 100oz, 10oz and 1 oz bars.
If you are buying coins and or bars for your IRA, buying them as a hedge against the devaluation of the dollar or buying them as a hedge against future inflation I commend you on your actions. It is estimated that only about 2 percent of all Americans only any form of physical gold and silver. It takes courage to make an investment decision that the huge majority of the population don’t currently believe in. However, that is how the smart money works. Get out ahead of the crowd and position yourself early.
The last advice is to shop and purchase wisely. There are thousands of bullion dealers out there and many of them will charge you way too much. It pays to shop and buy smart. Remember, this is not like buying a bag of groceries, it’s an investment. If you can save a few percentage points hear and a few there, it will greatly help your overall investment returns.