Generally, physical gold is a part of most people's investment portfolio. Since the dollars are going to fall in value, more and more people tend to buy gold to preserve value. In the gold investments, physical gold is the safest investment way. The investment types of physical gold include gold jewelries, gold coins, gold bullion and vaulted gold.
Gold jewelries are usually used as decoration, and a few of jewelries are worth collecting. It is easy to buy, and the buyer has the gold jewelry's ownership. However, the acquisition costs are greatly high. No jewelry can be sold at the buy price. Thus, gold jewelry is not a good investment product.
Gold coin is mostly or entirely made of gold. They are usually used as collection by the collectors, or bought as investment products by the investors. For the small investors, it is an ideal choice to buy gold coins which issued by a predominant country or respected private entity. Such as U.S. Gold Buffaloes, U.S. Gold Eagles, Canadian Gold Maple Leafs, and South African Krugerrands.
Since 100% gold is very soft, and is not suitable for coinage or ingots. Therefore, the gold coins are usually made of an alloy. They are mixed with other metals to make them more durable. Usually, gold bullion coins size include 1 oz, 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 and 1/20 oz. In most cases, each coin is dated. The fineness of gold bullion coins are 24 karats (.999 fine), 23 karats (.958 fine), 22 karats (.917 fine), 21 karats (.875 fine), 20 karats (.833 fine), 18 karats (.750 fine), 16 karats (.667 fine), 14 karats (.583 fine), 10 karats (.417 fine).
Gold bullion is defined that it is valued by its mass and purity rather than by a face value as money, it may be ingots, nuggets, or bars, but its quality meets standard conditions of manufacture, labeling and record keeping. Each gold exchange trading gold bars has its own standards. Generally, the fineness standard is 99%, 99.5%, or 99.99%. There are lots of gold bullion specifications; more common in the international market is 400 ounces, 100 ounces, 10 ounces, 2 ounces, 1 ounce, 1/2 ounces, and 1/4 ounces. For example, the minimum acceptable fineness of London gold bullion is 99.5%, and the weight is approximately 400 troy ounces (not a specified standard weight, it can be between 350 troy ounces and 430 troy ounces). Besides, Gold bullion is imprinted with manufacturer's name, weight, gold content and fineness.
Gold bullion is one of the most lucrative and safest investment way. Compared to gold coins, additional expenditure of gold bullion investment is not high, such as commission; gold bullion is with high liquidity so that it is easy to be converted into cash. Therefore, more and more investors choose the gold bullion investment to avoid the dollar's inflation.
Vaulted gold is gold bullion stored in professional bank vaults. Buying the vaulted gold, the investor has 100% ownership. In fact, only a few of investors request delivery or withdrawal of vaulted gold holding. As the vaulted gold is stored in professional bank vaults, is more safely stored than other physical gold stored at home or in a safe deposit box. Generally, the vaulted gold just includes the costs of buying the physical gold and the costs of its storage. Consequently, it is more close to the gold price, and cheaper than other physical gold.
If a new investor plan to invest in physical gold, gold bullion should be the first choice which has the high liquidity and relative cheaper price. When investor purchases physical gold, the investor must pay the full price. Physical gold investment occupies many cash, thus, it is more suitable for the strong investors with more idle funds.