Which are better - coins or bars?
This depends primarily on your purpose for buying physical precious metal. We discuss some of the issues to consider on our Product Comparison webpage and Bullion Bars webpage.
What are premiums?
Premiums (also known as fabrication charges) represent the cost of refining precious metal to a required purity (for example 99.99%) and then manufacturing it into various forms (such as bars and coins).
Why are gold premiums higher than silver for the same size product?
The price difference is due to:
- Refining - gold has to go through more processes to reach 99.99% purity than silver needs to reach 99.9%.
- Manufacturing - because silver is harder than gold, it can be struck more quickly. Gold's softness means more care has to be taken during the manufacturing process to achieve the same quality finish.
While silver premiums are lower, as a percentage of the metal value they are higher because silver is much cheaper per ounce than gold.
Will I get my premium back when I sell?
Bullion dealers usually buy back physical metal at spot price or just below.