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Getting the Best Gold Prices

Right now, many of us are looking for the best gold prices. According Joe Light’s article on the Wall Street Journal website, it’s important to know why you’re buying gold and where to start your search.

Sound too simple?

Maybe…but maybe not.

Here’s more from the WSJ article:


“People buy [physical] gold because they’re scared,” says David Ader, head of government bond strategy at CRT Capital Group, an institutional brokerage in Stamford, Conn. “If you own the physical gold, you can look at it and go, ‘Well, I can always buy a can of something with this.'”

Investors who have reached the point of wanting to own physical gold probably will want to have it easily accessible if an emergency strikes. So most should keep it in a safe at home that’s bolted to ground, says Bert Whitehead, a financial adviser in Franklin, Mich.

With the rise in gold prices, advertisements for gold salesmen have multiplied, and regulators are worried that some consumers might be taken advantage of.

The city attorney for Santa Monica, Calif., recently accused prolific advertiser Goldline International and some of its executives of using high-pressure sales tactics to sell collectible coins to unwitting consumers at huge markups. A Goldline spokesman referred to a statement made by the company last month that said the attorney’s complaint is without merit.

However that case plays out, it pays to be wary.

First, be clear on what, exactly, you want to purchase. Most gold investors seek exposure to the actual metal and care less about the collectible value of “rare” gold coins that might be pushed by some gold dealers, says Mr. Ader.

In that case, you will want to target gold that carries the cheapest price per troy ounce, whether it’s in the form of a coin or a gold bar. Bars will typically be the cheapest, he says.

Looking for a gold dealer? Steer clear of ones who advertise on TV or radio, says Donald Dempsey, a financial planner in Williston, Vt. “As a general statement, with all the ones you hear advertised on talk shows, you pay an extra premium,” he says.
Charging a Premium

Instead, he suggests getting recommendations from a financial planner. Alternatively, the World Gold Council has a listing of dealers on its website. The site also shows the spot price of gold. Gold dealers typically charge a premium of 2% to 5% for gold bullion and extra if you want to pay with a credit card rather than cash or a wire transfer, says Mr. Dempsey.

You should check prices with at least three gold dealers before buying to make sure you’re getting the best deal, says Mr. Whitehead.


Among other things, finding the best gold prices means we have to understand our motive for buying gold, talk to people who know the gold market today, and do our homework before making a purchase. It may sound simple–but sometimes, the simple steps make the most difference.

To read more of Mr. Light’s article, click here.

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