It may seem old fashioned, but it is still possible to place some of your wealth and prospects into the ancient practice of hoarding gold. Gold has been the standard of wealth for centuries, in almost every culture that requires some system of barter, from Europe to Asia to South America. The metal has been known to launch expeditions for new lands, start wars, and to be the cause of the annihilation of entire cultures.
The reasons for the world’s fascination with gold have been the same from the first item that a person exchanged one good for another until the present day. Gold is rare, easy to move, does not go bad or decay in any way, and it can be broken down into smaller parts. All cultures have recognized the value of gold, and as a result it is still a hot commodity on the markets in countries throughout the world today.
Many people who chose to invest in gold are somewhat skeptical about the state of the world. Gold, they figure, has always been and will always be in demand, so if the worst happens and an economy goes into the toilet, investments in gold will remain safe and secure (provided, of course, that it is not stolen, another common historical occurrence with the precious metal). Whenever a large scale war breaks out, gold prices always go up, as it is proof against an inflated and devalued dollar and other economic downturns.
Gold allows the investor a number of opportunities in their options. Many of us would not think of it in this way, but gold is easily stored in our houses and even in our persons in the form of decorations or jewelry, which means that gold is a kind of portable wealth. Someone who buys a lot of jewelry can therefore be thought of as a kind of investor in gold.
More serious investors might consider buying gold in the form of bullion or coins issued by stable, reputable governments through brokerage firms or well known dealers. Again, this gold is transportable, easily liquidated wealth and the investor must undertake for its safety herself. If you choose this method of investment and storing, you will have to get your gold tested before you can sell it on your own.
In order to avoid the expense and the hassle of testing your gold, you could instead choose to purchase the metal through a mutual fund that specializes in precious metals. Not only will this eliminate the need to have the gold tested before sale, it will also earn you some interest over time, which hard sales of gold will not. You will also avoid the costs of insurance and the anxiety of storage.
Investing in gold is a time proven way of retaining wealth even in the most trying of circumstances. The risks of gold also remain, however, as it remains a highly mobile commodity that can be taken away as easily as it is stored, and the proper precautions must be taken.