The past few years have proved difficult for investors. Poorly performing markets and low interest rates mean that conventional investments in stocks, shares, bonds and so on have yielded returns that can, at best, be described as modest. With interest rates at record lows, this has led to investors casting their net wider, seeking alternative strategies that can prove disastrous for the unwary.
Sure, the domestic and commercial property market is buoyant, and provides some great opportunities for investors, but not everyone is in a position to sink their funds into such an illiquid form of investment. There is, however, an alternative that is secure, liquid and not directly reliant on the financial markets. Here, we take a look at three ways you can invest in precious metals and realise a good return.
Fancy yourself as an Auric Goldfinger? The traditional method of investing in precious metals is by physically purchasing them. This could be in the form of gold coins or perhaps a 10 oz silver bar. Cautious investors have been protecting their wealth in this way since time immemorial as a way of ensuring that whatever else happens in the wider social or economic environment, their money is safe.
Of course, the downside of buying bullion is what to do with it. Not all of us are Bond villains with an underground lair. An alternative is to purchase certificates of ownership. These carry all the benefits without having to trouble yourself with the physical metal. Of course, if there really was some major societal breakdown, the Certificate is just a piece of paper.
It is possible to invest your money in precious metals via mutual funds. These can carry any amount of risk versus return, and can be crafted to incorporate either one or several precious metals. The mutual fund route is a highly flexible way of dipping a first toe into this form of investment.
Investments that stand the test of time
It is, perhaps, ironic that in these modern times, two of the most reliable and popular investment types are property and precious metals, both of which have stood the test of time for hundreds of years. Proof, perhaps, that our ancestors knew a good investment when they saw one and that there is a lot to be said for the old methods in uncertain times.