Bullion, the oldest reliable investment!

Investing in gold coins is usually the best choice when it comes to gold ownership.

Double eagle gold coin.
Image via Wikimedia Commons

Investing in gold coins is usually a better bet than opting for gold bars.

Interest in gold bullion bars probably stems from watching too many bank robbery movies.

It’s all very well owning ingots of gold when you’re a bank, but a little less practical when you are an individual.

When you buy gold coins they are easy to afford, easy to ship and store, and easy to sell. All in all, the buying, storing and selling of gold coins is a lot easier than dealing with those 400-ounce gold bars you see in the movies.

The key is to make sure you buy the right kind of coins.

The difference between investing in bullion gold coins and collectible gold coins.

When you buy the American Gold Eagle, Canadian Maple Leaf, South African Krugerrand or Chinese Panda you are buying bullion. It is in the form of a coin, with a fixed weight and purity. From an ownership or investment point of view, it is the same as buying an ingot of gold.

The price of these coins varies according to the price of gold at the time you make the purchase. A one-ounce Canadian Maple Leaf coin may cost you $890 today or $925 next week.

If you get tempted by an advertisement for some special commemorative gold coin, or even a rare, collectible gold coin, be aware that you are wandering off into different territory.

It is important not to confuse bullion coins with commemorative or numismatic coins, whose value depends on their rarity, design and finish rather than on their fine gold content. Many dealers sell both.

In addition, your collectible coin may not be pure gold. So regardless of its value as a collectible, the value of the gold content itself may well be lower than you think.

Gold coins are easy to store.

Let’s say, over time, you buy between five and fifty one-ounce gold bullion coins. What do you do with them? Where do you store them?

If you have fifty coins, you may well want to invest in a quality wall or floor safe. Just make sure you buy a good one and have it installed well. (Nothing worse than coming home to find the entire safe has been stolen.)

If you have just a few coins, they are small enough to hide around the house. Use your imagination. The beauty of gold coins is that they are small enough to hide in all kinds of ingenious places, from cut out spaces within books, to sock drawers and just about anywhere else.

When you keep your gold coins at home, just follow a single, cardinal rule: Don’t tell anyone you have them. Tell your spouse, of course, but nobody else.

Gold coins are easy to sell.

If you want or need to cash in one or more of your coins, nothing could be simpler. They are small and light enough to put in your pocket. Simply go to your nearest bullion dealer and exchange them for their price in cash.

If you are not in a hurry, you can also arrange the sale online and ship the coin or coins to a dealer outside of your immediate area. This takes longer, but is no problem if you’re not in a hurry.

The bottom line is that investing in gold coins is a great choice when it comes to securing a portion of your wealth in an asset you can truly own.

Which gold coins should you buy?

The Canadian Gold Maple Leaf

The American Gold Eagle

The Krugerrand

The Vienna Philharmonic

The Chinese Gold Panda

Mexican 50 Pesos Gold Coin

Mexican Libertad Gold Coin

Mexican Onza Gold Coin

The Gold Sovereign

The Gold Britannia

The Australian Kangaroo

The Australian Gold Lunar