A Brief Insider’s Guide to Buying and Selling Precious Metals
Whether you are looking to buy gold for investing or sell gold coins, or prefer to deal in silver jewelry or platinum bars, there is a great deal of insider information you should know in order to maximize your market value and avoid making common industry mistakes.
Gold is the stable horse in the investment world, our love affair with gold has been the unshakable force behind the rise and fall of empires for thousands of years, and every day millions of gold coins like the American Eagle or Canadian Maple change hands through brokers, precious metal dealers, investment opportunity managers, and third party services.
Between 2005 and 2011 the price of gold more than quadrupled, and though it has fluctuated recently with some downtrends in price valuations, there just is no security in the investment world like that of buying gold, which is tangible and can be weighed, measured, and held, unlike investing in futures.
Right behind those people buying gold, just as in the Olympics, there has always been plenty of people buying silver, a true powerhouse in its own right. Silver is the most abundant of the precious metals, and the preeminent source of many historical global shifts dating all the way back to 100 AD (and before) when Spain became the capital of silver production and the Spanish silver mines funded many of the glories of the Roman Empire, becoming an integral part of the burgeoning spice trade in Asia. This rich history carried through to the discovery of the new world and overflowing mines of silver that changed the world many times over.
And though the modern history of platinum begins roughly around the 18th century, the unrivaled value of platinum has continued to skyrocket as jewelry demand and possible scientific applications continued to expand in leaps and bounds, placing it in a high demand market, and whether you prefer to utilize the value of platinum for luxury items like wearing a platinum watch or buying your loved one a platinum ring, there is something magical about platinum.
Buy Gold Eagles for Safe Haven Investment Purposes
Buying rare coins like the 1857 Gold Liberty is an art form, and there is a big difference between investing in gold coins or gold bars and building an investment collection of specific rare coins, which requires diligence and expertise, an understanding of the history and grade of specific coins, certificates of authenticity, and a wealth of knowledge on the subject that the average gold coin investor is unlikely to care about.
Traditionally, high net worth investors keep a strong percentage of their assets in gold form as a protective factor and this trend has taken firm root in the United States where these individuals are more likely to take an active interest in building rare collections with the end game being the preservation of wealth across generations.
But most Americans invest in gold coins to hedge financial uncertainty or capitalize on price movement, then contemporary coins are the optimal way to serve this purpose, and the best advice is to buy Gold Eagles or Canadian Maples as North American coins offer the best value and are the easiest to buy and sell.
Not only is the 22-karat Eagle’s purity and content guaranteed by the US Mint, but when you buy Gold Eagles you can then use them in IRA’s if you so choose.
The Canadian Maple is even purer, registering at 24-karats, and to compete, the US Mint introduced the American Buffalo, a 24-karat gold bullion coin, to the trading world, but it is more expensive and less well known, so many people stick to what they know best and buy gold eagles.
Sell Gold Eagles Only After Keeping Them for 3 Years or More
Some people sell gold eagles relatively quickly after purchasing them, trading them likes stocks, but gold coins aren’t meant for this kind of trading, and should be kept for at least three years.
And when you buy gold eagles for the purpose of later intending to sell gold eagles, stick to the 1-ounce contemporary coins because the fractional coins such as the half ounce and quarter ounce carry higher premiums so your best value whether you intend to buy gold eagles or sell gold eagles, is to go with the 1-ounce options.
How to Get the Best Value When You Sell Broken Gold Jewelry
There is very little value in holding onto broken jewelry pieces unless they are family heirlooms or you intend to get them fixed. Otherwise you are better off liquidating your broken items for the value of the precious metals.
The key when you sell broken gold jewelry, and this applies to when you sell broken silver jewelry as well, is don’t get pressured into taking less than the full value of the weight.
Do your research on the current value so that you know what your items are worth going in, and then complete the transaction with a trusted professional in the industry rather than a pawn shop or mall kiosk.
When to Sell Silver Jewelry (And Sell Silver in General) and When to Keep It
There is a right time to sell silver jewelry and that is when you can get the most for your items, but to know when this time is, you have to understand what to look for with your pieces and how the market is turning.
First off, silver comes in various alloys. Pure silver is the most valuable (marked with a 999 for the 99.9% silver purity) but most silver jewelry is made from sterling silver which is a silver alloy mixed with copper or other metals in order to make it more durable and longer lasting. Sterling silver contains 92.5% silver and is often marked with the numbers “925” somewhere on the item.
Anything less than sterling silver is going to be marked with a 500 for 50% pure silver or an 800 for 80% pure silver, and if it is not marked at all, make sure to get it tested for purity independently of trying to sell it to reduce any conflict of interest from the professional doing the testing.
Once you know the purity levels, figure out the weight of the silver so that you can look up the current market price and figure out an approximate acceptable range.
But remember, this is the value of the silver melted down, and this fails to take into account whether the broken jewelry can be quickly and easily fixed by a professional, allowing a broker to sell it at a higher rate than the melted weight and increasing what you should get for it.
This typically only applies to exquisitely crafted, rare, historical, or otherwise unique pieces, as the workmanship gains a value unto itself, but you always want to make sure as it may be worth the cost of getting the piece fixed first before you sell it if the value if going to be greater that way.
From a Platinum Coin or Platinum Watch to a Full Platinum Bar, Here’s What to Know
Buying platinum for investing purposes can be a smart idea as platinum is the rarest and depending on the market, it can be the most valuable, but many people still hesitate to invest in platinum as a proxy for money despite its large potential upside.
Part of the hesitation stems from the fact that nearly 70% of the world’s platinum is mined in South Africa and the unpredictable political and civil climate causes a great deal of uncertainty when it comes to consistent production.
This can be a huge benefit for the investor or the wearer of luxury platinum items however, as annual platinum production has averaged less than platinum consumption (about 250 tonnes) over the past 20 years, causing price spikes that have taken platinum investments up by as much as 10-30% over the price of gold.
Right now platinum values are down, which is causing many to resist its lure, but others see this as a great opportunity to get in at a low point and turn their platinum coins, platinum bars, and platinum luxury items (like a platinum ring, platinum watch, or platinum wrist bag) into much more valuable investments down the road as global economies pick up… causing the demand for platinum in industrial applications to once again soar.
Information, Timing, and Valuations Are Key to Buying and Selling Gold, Silver, and Platinum
Buying and selling gold can be an intimidating venture when you don’t understand all the nuances of the market and aren’t sure who to trust, but consulting a stand-up high-quality professional like those at William Youngerman Inc. can make a world of difference in the quality of experience you have.
There is nothing like the security of having William Youngerman working with you to maximize your value, assess your assets, find you the collection pieces you are searching for, or give you the full breadth of decades of expertise in whatever precious metals venture you are embarking on.
From giving advice on selling silver or the right time to sell gold coins or platinum bars, William Youngerman and his staff have the insider information you can trust and the reputation you can count on.
Whether you are looking to buy gold for investment purposes or sell silver jewelry (or silver bars) at the highest value, or looking into buying platinum in the form of platinum bars or coins in the hopes of capitalizing on potential spikes in the market, knowing the trends, the insider tips to getting the highest returns, and understanding the differences in the options will go far towards helping you get the best market value out of your gold jewelry, platinum watch, gold pin, or silver jewelry.