When purchasing Sunnah Money (precious metals like gold and silver coins and bars), the most important things you should be aware of are 1] what the spot or daily price is, 2] the cost premium, and 3] tax isnt normally charged.
Spot & Daily Price
Gold and silver are traded daily on various commodity exchanges around the world and the current trading price is known as the spot price. The daily gold price is fixed twice a day in the London exchange (LBM) in USD, GBP and EUR at 10.30am (London AM) and 3pm (London PM), while also being fixed at the end of the trading day on the New York exchange (NYMEX/COMEX). The daily silver price is fixed once a day both on the London and New York exchanges.
When purchasing precious metals in most places around the world, the spot price is always used as the base purchase price, while in other places, the London or New York fixed prices may be used (Dubai’s gold price per gram is fixed twice a day). The daily fixed price of gold and silver can normally be found in the foreign exchange (forex) portion of the business section in daily newspapers.
All precious metal coins and bars are sold at a premium over their spot or fixed price. The premium is normally set as an amount over the price per gram or troy ounce, which normally decreases the larger the coin or bar is. Alternatively the premium is a fixed price (aka making charge) set for the minting and/or packaging of the coin or bar. As a general rule, the premium of minting a coin will always be higher than that of a bar. One should always calculate the premium as a percentage over the spot or fixed price in order to know how much of a deal you are getting for it. Premiums paid when purchasing precious metals are normally not recouped when selling it back to a dealer, as dealers will normally purchase it from you at or slightly below the spot or fixed price. So in order to get the best deal when selling gold and silver, sell it either to individuals in auctions (ebay) or classifieds (craigslist).
Bullion vs Numismatic Coins
When purchasing gold and silver coins, one must be aware of whether the coin is bullion (priced relative to metal quantity) or numismatic (priced at a high value [50% and more] over its metal quantity due to rarity). Do not purchase numismatic coins as they are geared towards coin collectors and are sometimes called medallions.
Bullion Coins vs Rounds
Bullion coins normally refers to coins minted by government mints, which have a face value on them and have legal tender status, while bullion rounds or medallions refers to coins minted by private mints without a face value or legal tender status. As a result, bullion coins are more widely known and have a higher premium than bullion rounds, and thats why silver 1 oz coins would normally be around 13-15% above spot, compared to around 7-10% for rounds.
|Popular Bullion Coins|
Eagle / Buffalo
Various countries, like the United States, Canada, UK, Australia, and France, use to mint 40 to 90 percent silver coins as dimes, quarters, half dollars, dollars, half crowns, florins, shillings, six pences, and three pences until the 1960s. These circulated old silver coins can be purchased in face value bag form ($100 to $1000) and are normally sold at the closest value to spot price. The benefit of these coins are that they are small, more easily recognized, have legal tender status and have real face value.
Precious Metal Storage
One of the most difficult things to consider after you purchase physical precious metals is the issue of storage, which is one of the reasons some people prefer alternatives to physical metal. One of the first places people consider storing their metal is in a safe deposit box at a local bank, which is a good choice but not perfect as you have limited access to it during banking hours. The second common place is home storage in a safe or hiding place, which is a good idea for small metal quantities but not perfect as houses can catch fire, broken into and/or affected by nature disasters. A third place for storage is to bury it on your property, ideally when no one is looking, in an airtight and waterproof container. A fourth place is storing it with a private vaulting/depository company (aka segregated vault storage) which you an approach directly or through companies like GoldSilver.com (Brink’s) or GoldMoney.com (VIA MAT), which is good if you have a large quantity of precious metal and the storage fees are cost effective. Whichever of these you choose to do, only tell one person you trust about where it is, whose job it is to access it if you are unable to. The options above all have their advantages and disadvantages, which is why it maybe best to use a combination of them to be safer.
In order to make it easier for individuals to get specific information on how to get a hold of gold and silver bullion in their country, I have prepared country specific buyer’s guides. If a guide isn’t written for your country, you can still benefit from reading the guide of a country close to yours.
United States – Gold Silver Inc, NWT Mint, APMEX, CMI Gold & Silver, Tulving, Euro Pacific Precious Metals, JH Mint, Gainesville Coins, Miles Franklin (SGT)
Australia – ABC Bullion (Sydney / Perth dealer), BullionMark (Sydney / Perth dealer), Ainslie Bullion (Brisbane / Perth dealer), Gold Bullion Australia (Gold Coast / Perth dealer), Gold de Royale (Brisbane), Perth Mint Distributors
Other General Information
Government Minted Bullion Bars: Royal Canadian Mint, Perth Mint
Popular Swiss Private Bars: Pamp Suisse, Credit Suisse, Valcambi
Popular Private Bars: Johnson Mathhew (US), Englehard (US), Heraus (Germany), Umicore (Belgium)
Popular Private Mints: Northwest Territorial Mint (US), Sunshine Minting (US), First Majestic (Canada)
Popular Online Stores: APMEX (US), Gold Silver Inc (US)
Important Measurements: 1 (troy) ounce – 31.1 grams, 1 tola – 11.66 grams, 32.15 ounces – 1 kg
How To Buy Gold Now – [3 mins] One of the first videos i watched about buying
How To Buy Silver & Gold – [14 mins] Goes over the most common questions
How to Buy Gold and Silver Bullion – [24 mins] Perth Mint’s beginner’s guide
How to Buy Gold and Silver – [7 mins] Explains to users about buying close to spot
What Products Should I Buy? – [2 mins] Brief guide to the various types you can buy
What is Junk Silver? – [4.5 mins] What it is and with examples of US and UK coins
Fake Silver 101: Buyer’s Guide – [7 mins] Guide to detecting fake silver or gold
Junk Silver or Fine Silver? – [5 mins] Silver bug David Morgan gives his view on it
- The Mints -
Visting the Royal Canadian Mint – [7 mins] Rick Mercer Report visits the mint in Ottawa
The Perth Mint – [9 mins] Brief history of the mint and the products it offers
- Coin Creation -
Making coins – [5 mins] Excerpt from a Discover Channel video on how coins are made
Making Stuff visits the Royal Canadian Mint – [5 mins] How the mint makes regular coins
Bullion Coin, Junk Silver – Wikipedia
Junk Silver Coins – Silver-Bullion.info
How to Buy Gold or Silver – RunToGold.com
A beginner’s guide to investing in gold – GoldCore.com
How to invest in gold – ThisIsMoney.co.uk
Australia Silver Buyers Guide – BullionMark.com.au
Coin melt values in United States and Canada – Coinflation.com