When I am looking to purchase physical precious metals I normally purchase coins. I focus on United States Silver Eagles and the Canadian Maple Leaf. Why – because they are easily recognizable an readily accepted by others if you have to convert them into cash, goods, or services. I prefer silver because it is a smaller denomination and more readily usable in day to day transactions. Since there is a lower unit value I feel there is less of a chance of counterfeits.
But there are some drawbacks. When you purchase coins you will be paying a premium above the precious metal value. This is to cover costs that go into making and marketing the coin. You also have to store the coins and that might cost you some additional money.
Others prefer to purchase silver bars. Why? The premium is lower than for coins. However I feel the chance of encountering a counterfeit is higher than with coins. This silver bar advocate gives some good advice when he suggests focusing on lower weight one ounce bars. There is less of a chance that someone will counterfeit a one ounce bar than a hundred ounce bar. When you get up to the higher weight bars and want to sell it the purchaser might require an assay of a 100 ounce or thousand ounce bar. That can be quire expensive.
In this video this silver bar enthusiast gives a breakdown of the different types of silver bars. Do you know the difference between natural, cast, milled, machined, poured and pressed bars? I certainly didn’t.
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