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BitGold Review, is the gold-based debit card service all it’s cracked up to be?

There have been a number of valiant attempts in the past to turn gold into a full-fledged tangible tradable currency. These have all failed so far, most spectacularly with e-gold that resulted in an enormous money laundering case, in fact the largest single digital money laundering case ever. Yet another attempt to establish gold as a fully legitimate, tradable, and exchangeable currency has been established in recent years. This is called BitGold. What is BitGold all about? Unfortunately, for the sake of the confusion and lack of clarity the name has caused, BitGold has no connection whatsoever to BitCoin. The only similarity between the two of them is the close name proximity. BitGold is actually an online platform that allows account holders to save, store, trade, pay with, and give to others gold in the form of a currency. The BitGold program operates similarly to a bank account. Individuals with accounts can make deposits from their own national currency, and then their money is changed into gold and denominated and valued as such. The technology involved is pushing the limits of the digital payments processing system as it assists individuals with securely buying, holding in secure storage, and also spending their gold with uncharacteristic ease. A BitGold account may be opened up in a matter of minutes, and it is totally free to both open and maintain. Account holders benefit from a number of conveniences, such as: • A secure and individually segregated vault and electronic account in which to buy and store gold. • The capability of receiving and making instantaneous payments in gold. • A prepaid credit...

5 Alternative Investments Every Investor Should Know About

The popularity of alternative investments has been soaring in recent years. A growing distrust of traditional investment products combined with historically low interest rates have created a growing subculture of investors seeking out new ways to protect and grow their money. In today’s markets, alternatives offer investors a dizzying variety of choice – fine wine, rare collectables, antique toys, vintage cars, there is a market for just about everything! In our following review we will focus on some of the more traditional alternatives which investors are likely to encounter, but first, we highly recommend you watch this short 2 minutes video to get familiarized with the alternative investment landscape:   Now let’s dive into the investments… Art and antiques Fine art and antiques have been a popular investment choice for centuries, but their emergence as a prime alternative asset class only really began to take off with the yuppie culture of the 1980s. Today, there is an unprecedented art boom worldwide, with work from prominent artists fetching draw dropping sums of money. In a recent auction at Christie’s, Pablo Picasso’s painting, Women of Algiers fetched a record $160m! Art is becoming the ultimate status symbols, and the growing class of oligarchs all over the world are unlikely to reel their horns in any time soon when it comes to bidding for the works from master artists. If your budget doesn’t quite stretch as far as your local oligarch’s, don’t worry. Affordable art can be found from a variety of different places. Undergraduate and graduate degree shows from students at your local Art School are often an interesting starting point...

Tips for protecting your retirement portfolio from Inflation

Did you know that investing in precious metals was one of your best bets when it comes to protecting your portfolio against the effects of inflation? Inflation is one of the worst enemies, if not THE worst enemy, of your purchasing power and the value of your dollar. The U.S. Federal Reserve aims at keeping inflation below 2%, but history has shown that inflation rates in the United States have often been way above this target. One thing is for sure, despite some rogue analysts have said, we will not see inflation go to 0 in our living. The Federal Reserve is interested at keeping inflation rates hovering around 2% to stimulate spending habits and create jobs. As an example, did you know that from 1980 to 2014, the cumulative inflation rate in the U.S. was 187.3%? That gives us an average rate of 5.51% per year. This basically means that $100 in 1980 would be worth $287.3 USD today, or in other terms, $100 USD in 2014 would be worth $34.81 USD in 1980. (N.B.: we are strictly talking about the purchasing power) Check out the table below to see the price increase since 1970 for some of the most popular products and services purchased by American consumers: Why is the Gold Price Not Affected by Inflation? Gold is not affected by inflation rates like the dollar for many reasons. One of the obvious ones is that one cannot simply “produce” gold at will. Supplies of gold on this planet are limited and until we develop the technology to go mine other planets in the solar system (and beyond!) we...

Pros and Cons of UK’s Gold Self-Invested Pension Plans (also known as Precious Metals SIPPs)

A Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) is a type of personal pension scheme that lets anyone with a taxable income in the UK invest in a complete range of investments that are approved by HM Revenue and Customs. Although all kinds of assets are permitted in an SIPP, only some types are subject to taxes. One investment type that is not subject to a tax charge is gold bullion, which has been permitted by the UK Treasury as an allowed investment instrument in SIPPs since 2006. Below we review the main pros and cons of investing in physical gold bullion with an SIPP: Pros Investors are able to decide which assets are bought, leased, and sold, and they can also decide when those assets are acquired/disposed of, depending on the terms of the agreement set forth by the trustee (plan provider). This means you’ll have full control over how your pension savings are being invested. Serves as a hedge against inflation and safeguards your investment savings from devaluation. For this reason, advisers recommend devoting at least 5%-20% of your total investment portfolio to precious metals. The UK Government will provide an income tax rebate equal to up to 45% of the cost of contributions made to an SIPP. In other words, if you purchase £10,000 in gold bullion for your SIPP this year, you would receive an income tax rebate of up to £4,500. There are no capital gain taxes charged on any gains achieved through gold investments made in an SIPP, so you won’t be taxed on any potential profits earned. The management costs for holding gold in an...

Three Reasons the American Gold Eagle Bullion Coin Belongs in Your Investment Portfolio

Any financial planner will tell you that diversity is integral to health of any portfolio, yet many people find that their retirement account at work and, possibly, their home are their only assets. As the housing bubble demonstrated, keeping all of your eggs in one basket is a disastrous plan. Diversifying by purchasing American gold eagle bullion coins is an easy way to hedge your bets against stock market fluctuations and the fickleness of property valuation. If you’re considering American Eagle gold coins, here are three aspects to weigh before making a decision. It’s ‘Cash’ That Doesn’t Suffer Inflation It’s a good idea to keep a portion of your assets in liquid forms so that you can handle an emergency. However, interest rates are abysmally low on savings accounts, fees can be high and you will lose purchasing power over time due to the devaluation of the dollar. Bullion coins, on the other hand, go up in value as gold does. While there have been fluctuations in the past, you can rest assured that you will have no problem getting fair market value for your coins if you need cash in a hurry. Whether you choose to wait for an auction to close on Bay or just go to the local pawn shop, the value of the American Eagle coin is easily verified and goes up along with the value of the gold it contains. Easy to ‘Set and Forget’ Paperwork and taxes are part of life, but investing in bullion coins is as easy as tossing them in your fire safe and forgetting them until you need them. While of course...