For those who wish to begin investing in precious metals, the market can be a strange and confusing place. There are many different options available, and though all of them are filled with promises of huge returns and zero risk, the truth is that investors need to be careful when thinking about buying gold, silver, platinum, palladium, or another prestigious substance. After all, these investments are not without their risks. They rise and fall just like any other assets, and getting into the market at the wrong time can wipe out a well-meaning but under-informed investor. For a quick guide to getting into this lucrative but tricky realm of finance, here is a short overview of current opportunities for investing in precious metals.
Buy and Hold Gold Bullion
At the moment, gold prices are at an all-time high. This is because the current trouble in the markets has made investors wary of other forms of commodities, and they have turned to gold as a hedge against the risk present in so many other areas of the market. Those high prices may dissuade some investors from getting involved, but the truth is that long-term investors still have reason to consider gold if they are at all interested in investing in precious metals. Though gold is expensive now, the coming turmoil in the world’s economic and political scene virtually assures that prices will rise even further. Those who buy in now stand to profit handsomely, but not immediately. Therefore, a buyer who is comfortable holding his position for a decade or more could do very well by purchasing bullion in the near term.
Speculate on Platinum and Palladium
These two prestigious substances are relative newcomers to the commodities scene. It wasn’t until the 1960s that people truly took an interest in them, but since then both have become exceptionally valuable. The reasons for their value have to do with their industrial uses, beauty, and above all, their rarity. This last factor is what makes them most interesting for those wanting to turn a profit quick. The prices of platinum and palladium are known to fluctuate quickly because the supply from year to year—and even month to month—is not constant. They are hard to find, and often there is a scarcity that forces those who want or need them to pay exorbitant prices. When the price spikes like that, speculators cash in. The only concern is timing a speculative purchase incorrectly, and then being stuck with depreciated assets that will never recover their value.
Exchange Traded Funds
A great method for investing in precious metals that reduces the risk involved is buying shares of an exchange-traded fund. These funds mix a number of different assets—bullion, mining stocks, coins, and so forth—that are either prestige metals themselves, or tied to the price of prestige metals. Exchange traded funds tend to appreciate slowly, but since the prices of these assets almost always rise over time (unlike the prices of stocks and bonds), these funds give buyers a good shot to make a steady profit.