Gold has been associated with wealth for thousands of years, even backing up currencies until very recently in human history. It’s a well-known precious commodity and coveted by investors for its long-term stability; during rocky economic periods, investors buy gold to counter poor stock market performance. There is no shortage of gold dealers online or in local brick-and-mortar stores, but anyone who has bought gold and enjoys using precious metals in their investment portfolio might also want to start looking at silver.
Silver is both mined from the Earth’s crust and it’s a byproduct of refining other metals like zinc, gold, lead, and copper. Silver, too, has often been gold’s partner in currency use, but today, silver enjoys widespread use in a number of industrial applications. These include medical equipment (catheters), silver nitrate disinfectant solutions, electronics (as one of the most conductive metals), nanoparticles, and traditional photography. Silver’s conductive properties mean it’s used in practically every electronic device in the world – yes, you’re probably already walking around with silver in your pocket. It’s used in cell phones, computers, refrigerators, vacuum cleaners, keyboards, not to mention jewelry.
Silver costs far less per ounce, but its value tends to follow the same patterns that gold exhibits, i.e., people invest during economic slowdowns, periods of high inflation, and times of geopolitical uncertainty. Silver prices benefited greatly from the commodities super cycle of the 2000s, and is back on the rise again today.
Investing in Gold and Silver
Silver is a smaller market than gold – while there’s much more silver supply, the high price of gold means that the annual supply of gold is worth nearly $150 billion, compared to silver’s $17 billion. While silver follows the macrotrends of gold, it’s considerably more volatile than gold. If you’re checking the day-to-day value of your silver investments, prepare for an emotional roller coaster and focus on long-term performance. Industrial demand also plays a major component in the price of silver, as 56% of global demand for silver is used in industrial applications.
Gold and Silver Bullion
Typically, you can buy silver bullion such as coins and bars from any gold dealer that buys bullion from a mint. In Canada, one of the largest inventories of silver and gold coins and bars is Silver Gold Bull, an online dealer that can fill orders quickly. You can buy coins and bars minted by the Royal Canadian Mint, the Perth Mint, the American Mint, and many others. If you’re buying silver as a gift, stop by Silvergoldbull.ca and search through collectibles, Silver Shield coins, and silver dollars, which have a lower purity rate, while investors can buy bullion bars and coins.
Silver storage can quickly become an issue for investors as large investments will physically take up a large amount of space. The most cost-effective form of buying silver in large quantities is bars, as coins have extra production costs to take into consideration. If you have a large quantity of precious metals to store, using the storage facilities of a gold dealer like Silver Gold Bull to keep it safe and allocated.
Learn about silver and gold as an investment before you start buying the precious metal. Research its price history and find out what commodities traders are saying about silver. Precious metals can be a very smart addition to an investment portfolio if you understand how gold and silver relate to the market.