Is gold still a safe haven?

Sylvie Ernoult
Kathleen Altmann

People have always been fascinated by gold. And many investors still consider this precious metal a safe haven in times of crisis. However, the value of gold can be quite volatile and it doesn’t generate any interest or dividends. Small numbers of gold bars or coins are therefore not a suitable investment for savers or small investors. But if you’re still interested in adding gold to your portfolio, here are some useful tips on investing sensibly.

  1. Whether you’re investing in gold bars or coins, you should always buy from a reputable dealer. Banks guarantee the authenticity of the gold bars and coins they sell.
  2. The price of investment gold depends on its weight, its fine gold content and the mint. It shouldn’t be more than ten percent higher than the current price of gold – so always check the current rate.
  3. The price of bars is closer to the material value of gold than that of coins, which are somewhat more expensive to produce. The value of collector’s coins can go up, irrespective of the price of gold, depending on how rare they are.
  4. You can buy a mini gold bar weighing one gramme for around 50 euros. The larger the denomination, the cheaper the price. You can also get more gold for your money with investment coins. One coin with one ounce of gold (around 31.1 grammes) is considerably cheaper than ten coins with one tenth of an ounce each.
  5. Gold in the form of bars or coins, which is also known as investment gold, is exempt from VAT (sales tax). In Germany, if you sell gold at a profit within one year, this is taxed at your personal income tax rate – assuming you’ve exhausted your annual exemption limit of 600 euros for private sale transactions.
  6. Unfortunately, gold bars and coins are also very popular with burglars and thieves. So, you should avoid keeping large amounts of gold at home. It is much safer to keep your gold in a safe or safety deposit box at a bank.