The great thing about precious metals as an investment tool is that there is only so much of them. Precious metals are physical objects that actually exist in the real world, in contrast to many forms of investments that are abstractions of things of value. Stocks, bonds, paper currencies and other non-material forms of investment can vanish like a whiff of smoke, but a bar of gold or silver still exists and maintains at least some value no matter what happens.
Such bedrock financial security has always been one of the big attractions of precious metals since the dawn of time. Almost any metal can present an investment opportunity, but when talking about precious metals the focus is usually upon these three major metals:
When it comes to investing in metals none is more popular than gold, which has such durable value it is actually considered a form of currency all its own. In fact, throughout history many currencies have been tied to gold, with some critics suggesting that one of main things wrong with monetary policy today is the widespread abandonment of the gold standard.
Investors like gold because in times of economic uncertainty it tends to increase in value, thereby making it a safe haven during financial storms. Currently gold is on a downturn, but in today’s stormy economic times few expect it to stay down for long.
Dramatic drops or increases are uncommon in gold unless there is some kind of crisis or there are significant economic developments. That is not true of silver, which generally has more volatile price swings. This is both a strength of silver and a weakness, as the price swings provide opportunities for quick returns, but also for quick losses.
Because it is rarer than gold the price of platinum is often higher. However it is also more volatile than either gold or silver, thereby making it riskier. This higher risk scares away some investors, but those who can spot the opportunities can make a good return. Platinum also has significant practical uses in the auto, petroleum and computer industries to help keep demand up.
Most financial analysts advise having at least some precious metals as part of the portfolio of every investor, if only as a hedge against volatility and risk. However, with experience in the market there are also opportunities for solid returns in today’s precious metals. There are many specialist metal companies out there from Dynamic Metals in the UK who are titanium metal suppliers to JBR Recovery who are the UK and Europe’s leading precious metal recovery specialists. Researching metal investment guides on the web will give you more information to make informed investment decisions.