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Gold Investing Guide 

Gold has long been valued as a stable investment, retaining its worth across centuries. This reliability makes it a sought-after asset during economic uncertainties. Whether in times of market volatility, geopolitical instability, or hyperinflation, gold has historically provided a reliable refuge for investors. 

Investors turn to gold to safeguard their portfolios during economic uncertainties. Its track record in protecting against inflation, especially in hyperinflationary scenarios, is notable. In situations where traditional currencies lose value rapidly, gold remains resilient, offering a tangible and universally recognized store of value. Gold is a smart choice for investors seeking to diversify their portfolios and navigate the complexities of the financial landscape. 

Benefits of Investing in Gold 

Gold, revered for its beauty and enduring value, is not just a precious metal but also a unique investment, a hedge against economic turbulence, and a symbol of wealth. 

Wealth Preservation 

Gold has stood the test of time as a reliable store of value. In times of economic uncertainty or currency devaluation, gold often retains its worth, protecting your wealth. 

Hedge Against Inflation 

As inflation erodes the value of paper currency, gold often increases in value, safeguarding against the diminishing purchasing power of money. 


Adding gold to your investment portfolio can reduce risk. Gold’s price movement often differs from stocks and bonds, providing a balance during market fluctuations. 


Gold is a highly liquid asset. You can readily buy or sell gold in various forms, such as coins, bars, or gold ETFs, making it a flexible investment. 

Safe Haven 

In times of geopolitical instability or financial market downturns, gold is often considered a ‘safe haven’ asset. Its value tends to remain stable or even increase when other assets are declining. 

Tangible Asset 

Unlike digital assets or stocks, gold is a physical commodity. There’s a certain reassurance in holding a tangible asset that does not depend on digital systems or financial institutions. 

Potential Growth 

While gold is often seen as a defensive asset, it also has the potential for growth. Factors like global demand, supply constraints, and market sentiment can drive its price up. 

Accessible Investment 

Gold can be accessible to investors at various financial levels. You can start small, with gold coins or small bars, and gradually increase your investment. 

Cultural and Historical Value 

Gold holds cultural significance in many societies and is often associated with wealth and prosperity. It’s more than an investment; it’s a part of human history. 

No Credit Risk 

Gold doesn’t carry credit risk. It is not a liability of any government or corporation, making it a pure asset. 

Remember, like any investment, investing in gold comes with risks and should be done as part of a diversified portfolio. It’s wise to research thoroughly or consult a financial advisor to align your gold investments with your overall financial goals. 

Costs Associated with Holding Gold 

When investing in physical gold, consider factors like premiums over the gold spot price, shipping costs, storage and security, liquidity, and authenticity. Be sure to buy from reputable dealers and consider how each type of gold fits into your overall investment strategy and goals. Remember, diversification is key in any investment portfolio, and gold should be one part of a broader investment strategy. 

Getting Started with Gold Investing 

Venturing on your journey into gold investing can be exciting and rewarding. Investing in gold is a journey. Start small, learn continuously, and adjust your strategy as you gain more confidence and understanding of the gold market. 

Consider Liquidity Needs: How important is it for you to be able to quickly convert your investments into cash? Different investments offer varying degrees of liquidity. Gold can be relatively liquid, especially in forms like gold ETFs or coins. 

Regularly Review and Adjust Your Goals: As your personal circumstances, market conditions, and financial outlook change, so should your investment goals. Regular reviews will help keep you on track and allow you to adjust your strategy as needed. 

Access your Risk Tolerance 

Determining your risk tolerance when investing in gold is a crucial step in creating a balanced investment strategy. Gold is known for its relative stability, especially during economic uncertainty. However, its price can still fluctuate due to global economic conditions, currency valuations, and demand for jewelry and industrial use. While gold is often considered a safe haven, it is not immune to price swings. 

Assess Your Financial Situation and Goals 

Consider your overall financial health, including your income, debts, savings, and investment goals. If you are looking for long-term stability and have a lower risk tolerance, allocating a portion of your portfolio to gold can be wise. 

Determine Your Investment Horizon 

How long you plan to hold your investment can impact your risk tolerance. Gold is often considered a long-term investment. If you are planning to hold it for many years, you might be better positioned to weather any short-term volatility. 

Reflect on Your Reaction to Market Volatility 

Think about how you have reacted to past market downturns or fluctuations in your investments. If you get anxious and sell during dips, a high allocation in gold might suit you, given its reputation as a stable asset. If you are comfortable riding out market waves for potentially higher returns, you might tolerate more exposure to other, more volatile investments. 

Educate Yourself About Gold’s Role in Diversification 

Diversification is key in managing risk. Gold often has a negative correlation with other assets like stocks and bonds. Including it in your portfolio can help in balancing out risks and reducing overall portfolio volatility. 

Consider Different Forms of Gold Investment 

Physical gold, ETFs, mining stocks, and mutual funds have different risk profiles. Physical gold, while stable, involves storage and insurance considerations. Gold stocks and ETFs can offer more accessible liquidity but are more susceptible to market fluctuations. 

Regularly Review and Adjust Your Portfolio 

Your risk tolerance is not static; it can change with your age, financial situation, and market conditions. Regularly review your investment strategy to ensure it aligns with your current risk tolerance and financial goals. You can easily track your precious metals portfolio using our free portfolio tool

Understanding your risk tolerance is about finding a balance that lets you achieve your financial goals while still being able to sleep soundly at night. As you become accustomed to the nuances of gold investing, you may find your comfort level with risk evolving. 

Find a Reputable Dealer 

Finding a reputable gold dealer is crucial in your journey as a gold investor. Here are some things to consider when researching gold dealers: 

  • Do Your Research: Start by researching dealers online. Look for reviews and testimonials from other customers. A dealer with a long-standing, positive reputation is generally a safer bet. 
  • Check Credentials: Look for dealers who are members of recognized industry associations. In the United States, for instance, membership in organizations like the Professional Numismatists Guild (PNG) or the American Numismatic Association (ANA) is a good sign. These organizations have ethical guidelines that members must follow. 
  • Transparency: A trustworthy dealer should be transparent about their pricing, fees, and the gold’s purity. They should be willing to answer your questions clearly and provide all the information about their gold products. 
  • Customer Service: Pay attention to the quality of customer service. A reputable dealer will be patient, informative, and helpful, especially to new investors who may need more guidance. 
  • Compare Prices: Check and compare prices from multiple dealers. Be wary of prices that seem too good to be accurate; they often are. Remember, reputable dealers will have prices that are competitive but also realistic. 
  • Educational Resources: Many reputable dealers provide educational resources for their clients. This can include information about gold investing, market trends, and other valuable insights. 
  • Avoid High-Pressure Sales Tactics: Be cautious of dealers who use high-pressure sales tactics or push you to make quick decisions. Investing in gold should be a deliberate decision, not rushed. 
  • Ask for Referrals: If you know other gold investors, ask for their recommendations. Personal referrals can be valuable in finding a trustworthy dealer. 
  • After-Sale Support: Consider dealers who offer good after-sale support, including assistance with storage, insurance options, and buy-back policies. 

Building a relationship with a reputable gold dealer can benefit your ongoing investment journey. Take your time to find a trustworthy dealer that aligns with your investment goals and preferences. 

How is the Price of Gold Determined? 

Understanding how the price of gold is determined can seem complex, but it’s essential knowledge for any gold investor.  

Many things influence the price of gold, including 

  1. Supply and Demand: Like many commodities, the price of gold is influenced by supply and demand dynamics. If more people want to buy gold and there’s not enough gold for sale, the price goes up. Conversely, the price drops if fewer people want to buy gold or there’s too much gold available. 
  1. Global Market Trading: Gold is traded on global markets. Its price is constantly changing, reflecting trades made in markets like the London OTC market and the COMEX in New York. The price can fluctuate due to economic reports, geopolitical events, and changes in market sentiment. 
  1. Currency Value: The value of the U.S. dollar plays a significant role. Gold is typically priced in U.S. dollars, so when the dollar weakens, gold prices often rise. This is because gold becomes cheaper in other currencies, driving up demand. 
  1. Interest Rates: Interest rates, often influenced by central banks like the Federal Reserve, can impact gold prices. Lower interest rates reduce the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding assets like gold, making it more attractive to investors. 
  1. Economic and Political Factors: Economic uncertainties, like inflation, recessions, or political unrest, can drive investors towards gold as a ‘safe haven’ asset. In such times, increased demand can push up prices. 
  1. Investment Market Trends: Trends in investment markets, including the stock market, bond market, and even other commodities, can influence gold prices. For example, a downturn in the stock market can lead to higher gold prices as investors look for safer places to put their money. 
  1. Central Bank Reserves: Central banks hold significant amounts of gold in reserves. Their buying and selling decisions can influence the global supply and demand balance, thereby impacting prices. 
  1. Mining Costs: The cost of mining and extracting gold can set a floor for its price. If the price of gold falls below the cost of mining, miners may reduce production, leading to a supply shortage and a subsequent price increase. 
  1. Speculation: Futures and derivatives markets, where investors speculate on the future price of gold, also play a role. Speculative activities can lead to short-term price volatility. 

The price of gold results from a complex interplay of numerous factors, ranging from macroeconomic trends to market sentiment. As an investor, keeping an eye on these factors can help you make more informed decisions about when to buy, hold, or sell gold. 

How Much Gold Should I Hold? 

Determining the right amount of gold to hold in your investment portfolio is a decision that varies based on individual circumstances. Many financial experts suggest allocating between 5% and 15% of your portfolio to gold.  

Timing the Gold Market 

Timing the market, especially for new gold investors, is a topic often surrounded by caution. The idea behind market timing is to make investment decisions (buying or selling) based on predicting future market price movements. 

Attempting to time the market accurately and consistently is extremely challenging, even for professional investors. Many unpredictable factors, including economic indicators, geopolitical events, and investor sentiment, influence market movements. 

It is important to understand that past performance does not always indicate future results. While historical data can provide insights, it is not a foolproof predictor of future market movements. 

One risk of trying to time the market is missing out on periods of significant gains. For example, if you sell your gold expecting a downturn, but the market continues to rise, you miss out on those gains. 

Market timing can be stressful, as it often involves making high-stakes decisions under uncertainty. This stress can lead to emotional decision-making, which is not conducive to a sound investment strategy. 

Keep informed about economic trends, market analysis, and gold market fundamentals. Even if not perfectly timed, educated decisions can be more effective than speculative guesses. 

Adopting a long-term investment perspective is advisable. Markets can be volatile in the short term, but they tend to follow more predictable trends over the long term. 

Regulatory Considerations and Taxes 

As a new gold investor, it’s important to be aware of regulatory considerations and tax implications related to your investment. Stay informed about any changes that might affect your investment. 

We cannot offer direct financial advice. Please consult a tax advisor or financial planner who can provide guidance tailored to your situation. 

  1. Regulatory Considerations
  • Compliance with Local Laws: Different countries and regions have specific regulations governing the purchase, sale, and ownership of gold. Make sure you understand and comply with these regulations. 
  • Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Regulations: When buying or selling gold, especially in large quantities, you may be subject to AML checks. Dealers might ask for identification or proof of funds to comply with these regulations. 
  • Import and Export Restrictions: If you’re buying gold from another country or planning to move it across borders, be aware of any import and export restrictions or duties that may apply. 
  1. Taxes on Gold Investments
  • Capital Gains Tax: In many jurisdictions, selling gold for a profit can result in a capital gains tax. The rate and application of this tax can vary, so it’s important to understand the specifics for your country. 
  • VAT and Sales Tax: Some countries impose a Value-Added Tax (VAT) or sales tax on gold purchases. However, certain forms of investment-grade gold may be exempt. 
  • Tax on Dividends and Interest: If you invest in gold through stocks (like gold mining companies) or ETFs, any dividends or interest earned may be subject to taxation. 
  1. Reporting Requirements
  • Income Reporting: If you earn income from your gold investments through dividends or interest, this may need to be reported on your tax returns. 
  • Asset Reporting: In some countries, you may need to report holdings of physical gold or gold investments as part of your assets, depending on the amount. 
  1. Tax Advantaged Accounts
  • Retirement Accounts: Some retirement accounts, like IRAs in the United States, allow you to hold certain types of gold investments, potentially offering tax advantages. 

Maintain accurate records of all your gold transactions, including dates, amounts, prices, and associated costs. This is essential for tax reporting and calculation of gains or losses.  

Types of Physical Gold Invesment Types 

Investors researching buying physical gold will find various options to consider. Each type offers unique features and suits different investment strategies. 

Gold Bullion Coins 

These are minted coins, often produced by government mints, with their content and purity guaranteed by the issuing country. The American Gold Eagle, Canadian Maple Leaf, and South African Krugerrand are popular examples. These coins are traded at a small premium over their gold content and are a popular choice for collectors and investors. 

Gold Bars 

Gold bars, also known as gold ingots, are a classic choice for investing in gold. They come in various sizes, from small 1-gram gold bars to large 400-ounce bars traded on commodity markets. Bars usually have lower premiums than coins and are a cost-effective way to hold gold. They are preferred by investors looking to hold larger amounts of gold. 

Gold Rounds 

Similar in appearance to coins, gold rounds are produced by private mints. They do not have a face value like coins and are valued purely for their gold content, craftsmanship, and demand. Rounds often feature attractive designs and can be a more affordable alternative to government-minted coins. 

Numismatic Gold Coins 

These rare or antique gold coins are valued for their collectibility, historical significance, and aesthetic qualities rather than just their gold content. Their prices can be significantly higher than bullion coins and are subject to market demand in the collectors’ world. 

Fractional Gold Coins 

These are smaller-sized gold coins that offer the benefits of bullion but at a lower price point due to their smaller gold content. They are an excellent option for those looking to invest in gold with a limited budget. 

Gold Jewelry 

While not the most cost-effective form of gold investment due to craftsmanship costs and markups, jewelry allows you to enjoy gold in a wearable form. When investing in gold jewelry, focus on pieces with high gold purity and classic designs that hold their value over time. 

Indirect Ways to Invest in Gold 

Investing in gold indirectly offers options for those who prefer not to hold physical gold. These methods provide exposure to gold’s price movements without the need to store or insure physical gold.  

Here are some common indirect ways to invest in gold: 

Gold Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) 

Gold ETFs are funds that track the price of gold and are traded on stock exchanges. They offer a liquid and convenient way to invest in gold without physically owning it. Some ETFs hold physical gold, while others track gold futures or gold mining company stocks. 

Gold Mutual Funds 

Like ETFs, gold mutual funds invest in various gold-related assets, including physical gold, gold futures, and gold mining companies’ stocks. They are managed by professionals who make investment decisions for the fund’s investors. 

Gold Mining Stocks 

Investing in shares of gold mining companies provides exposure to gold prices since the profitability of these companies is linked to the market price of gold. This option can offer higher returns than direct gold investments but also carries added risks related to company performance and mining operations. 

Gold Futures and Options 

These are derivative contracts traded on commodities exchanges. Gold futures allow investors to speculate on the future price of gold, while options provide the right, but not the obligation, to buy or sell gold at a set price on or before a specific date. These instruments can be used for hedging or speculative purposes and require a good understanding of the market. 

Gold Certificates 

Gold certificates represent ownership of a certain quantity of gold and are issued by some banks and gold dealers. They allow investors to own gold without physically holding it. The certificates can be bought and sold, and the gold is held securely by the issuer. 

Gold-Backed Cryptocurrencies 

Some cryptocurrencies are backed by physical gold, with each token representing a certain amount. These digital assets provide a modern way to invest in gold, combining the properties of cryptocurrencies with the stability of gold. 

Royalty and Streaming Companies 

These companies provide financing to gold mining companies in exchange for a percentage of the mine’s future gold production or the right to purchase a portion of the production at a fixed cost. They offer exposure to gold prices but with different risks than owning mining stocks directly. 

Investing in Gold: On a Budget 

Investing in gold on a budget is possible, and several strategies can be employed to incorporate gold into your investment portfolio without a significant initial expenditure. First, you could consider indirect ways of investing in gold. But there are also a few other ways to invest in gold with a limited budget.  

Fractional Gold Coins or Small Bars: Consider purchasing fractional gold coins or small gold bars. These are available in smaller sizes (1 gram, 5 grams, 1/10 of an ounce, etc.), making them more affordable than full-sized bars or coins. 

Gold Savings Programs: Some companies offer gold savings programs, allowing you to buy a small amount of gold regularly. Over time, these small purchases can add up to a significant holding. 

Dollar-Cost Averaging: This strategy involves regularly investing a fixed amount of money in gold, regardless of the price. This can help mitigate the risk of market volatility. 

Secondary Market Gold: Premiums on secondary market gold are usually lower. We test our secondary market items for fineness and weight. This is an affordable way to buy gold. 

Choosing Between Gold Coins and Gold Bars 

Investing in gold can be done through various forms, with gold coins and gold bars being two popular options. Both are available in assorted sizes, but larger bars often have a lower premium. Beginning investors can start by purchasing a one gram bar, whereas large investors may buy 400-ounce gold bars. Collectors may prefer coins for their numismatic value. 

What to Consider When Deciding Between Bars and Coins 

  • Investment Goals: If the goal is to hold physical gold as a hedge against economic uncertainty or as portfolio diversification, bars might be more cost-effective. Coins are preferable if the interest is in collectibility and potential numismatic value. 
  • Budget: Smaller investors may prefer coins due to their lower absolute cost per piece, while larger investors might opt for bars for their lower relative cost (lower premium over spot price). 
  • Storage and Security: Coins are easier to store and secure, especially for smaller investors. Bars, especially larger ones, may require more complex security measures. 
  • Liquidity Needs: For those who may need to sell part of their holdings, coins offer more flexibility due to their smaller denominations. 

The choice between gold coins and gold bars depends on your goals, budget, interest in collectibility, and considerations for storage and liquidity. 

Gold vs Other Precious Metals 

Gold is one of several precious metals that investors consider, each with its own unique characteristics and market dynamics. Here’s a comparison of gold with silver, platinum, and palladium: 


  • Historical Value: Gold has been valued for millennia and is deeply entrenched in cultural and financial systems worldwide. 
  • Stability: Often considered the most stable of precious metals, gold is a popular hedge against inflation and economic uncertainty. 
  • Liquidity: Gold is highly liquid, with a vast market for physical gold and gold-related financial products. 
  • Investment and Jewelry Demand: Gold’s demand comes from investment interests and the jewelry industry. 
  • Lower Industrial Use: Compared to other precious metals, gold has less industrial use. 


  • Affordability: Silver is more affordable per ounce than gold, making it accessible to a broader range of investors. 
  • Higher Volatility: Silver prices are more volatile than gold, offering potentially higher gains and risk. 
  • Industrial Demand: Silver has significant industrial applications, particularly in electronics, solar panels, and new technologies, influencing its price dynamics. 
  • Investment and Collectibility: Like gold, silver is sought after for investment and collectibility, including coins and bullion. 


  • Industrial Use: Platinum is heavily used in automotive catalytic converters and the chemical and petroleum industries, making it price sensitive to industrial demand and supply constraints. 
  • Rarity: Platinum is rarer than gold and silver, which can lead to higher prices during times of strong demand or supply shortages. 
  • Investment Market: The market for platinum investment products is smaller than that of gold, leading to potentially less liquidity. 


  • Industrial Demand: Palladium, like platinum, is heavily used in automotive catalytic converters. Its price is closely tied to the automotive industry and can be volatile based on changes in this sector. 
  • Rarity and Price Fluctuations: It’s even rarer than platinum, which can lead to significant price fluctuations. 
  • Emerging Market: The market for palladium as an investment is relatively new and less developed compared to gold. 

Investors choose among these metals based on investment goals, risk tolerance, market outlook, and interest in industrial vs. monetary assets. Gold often serves as a cornerstone for precious metal investors due to its stability and historical significance, while others like silver, platinum, and palladium can provide diversification and potentially higher returns, albeit with greater risk and volatility. 

Why do the Wealthy Buy Gold? 

Wealthy investors buy and invest in gold for the same reasons as most. The differences lie in the volume and how long they may hold onto the gold. Some never sell their gold and use it to preserve wealth for their beneficiaries. 

The wealthy are often in a better position to hold gold long-term. Imagine if you had bought gold in the early 2000s for less than $300 USD. As of January 2024, the spot price of gold was over $2000 per ounce. If a wealthy investor held gold for those years, they would experience a 566.67% increase. Everyone who could hold gold that long would have experienced this gain, but the volume would be less for smaller investors. 

Gold Jewlery: Is it a Smart Investment? 

Gold jewelry can be beautiful and often is passed on to future generations. But is it a worthwhile investment? 

Like any investment in gold, you will benefit from exploring the pros and cons of the purchase. 

Advantages Disadvantages 
Wearable Asset Costs Much Over Spot 
Sentimental Value Usually Contains Alloys 
Possible Heirloom Low Resale Value 
Potential Gold Value Design May Become Untrendy 
Table comparing and advantages and disadvantages of buying gold jewelry.

The advantages and disadvantages listed above are for average investors. You may see jewelry sold for high prices in auctions, but it may be associated with history, celebrity, royalty, or other aspect that puts that piece in high demand. Generally, for most of us, the sentimental value of an item makes the jewelry more valuable to us than what someone else would be willing to pay for it. Often, pawn shops and “we buy gold” businesses will offer you a less than melt value quote. 

While gold jewelry can be a part of an investment strategy, its value is influenced by factors beyond just the market price of gold. It is more suited for those seeking a long-term, personal investment rather than those looking for short-term financial gains or high liquidity. 

Selling Your Gold 

Selling gold and gold investments is a significant decision, and understanding the best approach can ensure you optimize your profit or minimize loss and experience a smooth transaction. 

Understand the Current Value of your Gold 

  • Before selling, look up gold’s current market price (spot price). This will give you a baseline for evaluating offers. 
  •  If you are selling physical gold, its value will depend on its purity (karats) and weight. 

Choosing Where to Sell 

  • For physical gold, consider selling to a reputable dealer. Research dealers online, check reviews, and compare their buying prices. 
  • Some jewelry stores buy gold but be aware they may offer lower prices as they factor in refining costs. 
  • Platforms like eBay can be used for selling gold but be cautious of scams and understand the platform’s fees and policies. 
  • If your investment is in gold ETFs or stocks, you can sell them through your brokerage account, like any other stock transaction. 

Decide on the Best Time to Sell 

  • While it’s challenging to time the market perfectly, consider selling when gold prices are high, especially if the price meets or exceeds your investment goals. 
  • Sometimes, the decision to sell is based on personal financial needs or changes in your investment strategy. 

Preparing for the Sale 

  • Have all necessary documents ready, such as receipts, certificates of authenticity, and appraisal reports, if applicable. 
  • If selling physical gold, present it in its best condition. Original packaging and documentation can enhance its appeal. 

Negotiating the Sale 

  • Understand the lowest price you’re willing to accept and be prepared to negotiate to achieve a fair sale price. 

Negotiating the Sale 

  • Know Your Bottom Line: Understand the lowest price you’re willing to accept and be prepared to negotiate to achieve a fair sale price. 

Safety Considerations 

  • When selling physical gold, ensure transactions are conducted in a safe location, especially if dealing with a private buyer. 
  •  Use secure payment methods for personal sales and avoid accepting checks from unknown buyers. 

Stay informed about the gold market trends and be patient. Rushing to sell can lead to accepting lower offers. Take your time to research and make informed decisions to make the best sales deal possible. 

Additional Resources 


How to Beat the Banks with Gold

Why You Should Never Buy Gold and Silver Below Spot

How Much Gold Should You Buy?

The Perfect Time to Buy Gold

Is It Better to Invest in Gold Bars or Gold Coins?

Is Fractions Gold a Good Investment?

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Quick Guides to Investing

Step 1:

Why Buy Physical Gold and Silver?

If you are concerned about the volatility of the stock market, you’re not alone. The extreme highs and lows of the stock market often lead investors towards safe-haven assets, like bullion. Historically, the Precious Metals market has an inverse relationship with the stock market, meaning that when stocks are up, bullion is down and vice versa.

Step 2:

How Much Gold and Silver Should You Have?

This question is one of the most important for investors to answer. After all, experts suggest limits on how much of any types of investments should go into a portfolio. After deciding to purchase and own Precious Metals and considering how much money to allocate, one can then think about how much and what to buy at any point in time.

Step 3:

Which Precious Metals Should I Buy?

With the frequent changes in the market and countless Precious Metal products available, choosing investments can be difficult. Some want Gold or Silver coins, rounds or bars while others want products that are valuable because of their design, mintage or other collectible qualities. Also, collectors may shop for unique sets and individual pieces for their collections.

Step 4:

When to Buy Gold & Silver

After considering why, how much, and what Precious Metals products to buy, an investor’s next step is when to buy them. This decision requires an understanding of market trends and the impact of economic factors on precious metal prices.

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