Metal bullion, in its basic form, is just whatever precious metal, in an easily handled bulk form. This bullion can also be stamped, carved, and otherwise adorned to make it more artistically appealing, but the important part is its verifiable weight. Precious metals like gold and silver, can be turned into ingots, bars, or coins for ease of trading. Many people who are looking at investing in precious metals begin by acquiring some small gold bars or ingots, eventually acquiring a large collection for a long-term investment.
For many investors that prefer to invest in coins, the gold coins from Vienna, South Africa, Canada, and the United States are quite popular. This is because of their beauty, the ease of transportation, their easily verifiable value as well as how easy they are to acquire. They are, however, quite expensive compared to gold ingots. Coins trade at a price well above that of raw metal. As with all precious metals, you get no return from them as you hold them: there are no “dividends” or interest payments. The money you make is the difference between what you originally paid, compared with the value you receive for it when you finally sell, much like real estate.
Quality is something you must consider when buying gold or precious metals.
This is especially true when investing in coins. Coins are graded depending on how perfect and pristine they are. Any sort of defect can affect the value of the coin dramatically. You must either be well versed in the coin grading systems or have a professional help you to get the best and safest value for your money.
Some people look at jewelry and wonder if it can be looked at as a precious metals investment. Jewelry, however, is valued for the workmanship that went into its making, and its sentimental and artistic value. This is similar, in a way to gold coins, and a reason why gold coins are far out value their per-ounce value. Jewelry usually does not appreciate at the same rate as bullion, unless melted down at some point.
Some people choose to “get into” gold and precious metals by investing in the stocks of precious metals mining companies. The stock prices for these companies, and their profits, tend to rise when the bullion prices for their mined products increase. This is one area where you can see a return, as you can receive dividends. However, since you are dealing with a presently-volatile stock market, and so you lose the “insurance policy” factor that investing in gold and precious metals provides.
You should certainly start small when learning how to buy gold bars and precious metals.
Many people even begin their search by looking at eBay! When you get an idea of what you are looking for, I recommend that you ally yourself with a reputable company that can walk you through the learning process. This sort of company is ultimately a customer service company, as they know they make far more money by serving their customers well and having them return over and over again. to purchase gold and precious metals.