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Morgan Stanley to Expats: Take Your $500,000 IRA Somewhere Else

Thursday, March 20th, 2014

Morgan Stanley is no longer accepting applications from expats who wish to open a new IRA or roll over an existing IRA, unless the account in question is valued at $500,000 or more, according to recent reports. While the exact reasoning behind this policy change is unclear analyst Charles Hancock believes the move is “50% compliance and 50% greed”.

“Laws such as [know your customer] and the Patriot Act have made it more difficult for expats to maintain certain types of financial accounts, but that doesn’t mean it is impossible,” Hancock said. “If current laws made it impossible to own an IRA while living outside of the United States then Morgan Stanley and other custodians who have taken similar measures wouldn’t have a threshold of half a million dollars.”

Hancock says that while some expats may receive calls or correspondence from their custodian requesting that they find another home for their IRA such tactics are still the exception rather than the rule. “There are quite a few IRA custodians that accept expats with retirement accounts,” Hancock said. “Two that come to mind are Equity Institutional and GoldStar Trust, and both of those firms offer traditional investments as well as alternative assets like gold bullion.”

Individuals who are interested in opening or transferring an IRA or inactive 401(k) can call directly for an obligation-free portfolio evaluation. advisers are non-commissioned representatives and can walk you through the IRA rollover paperwork from start to finish so that your account is set up the way you want it so you can get back to,living your life.

Why Investing in Gold Bullion Could Cost You Everything

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

I’ve been buying and selling gold bullion since the mid-1980s, and even though gold was in a bear market at the time I was able to realize profits by watching the technical charts, spending hours each day poring over the tiniest tidbits of news that could possibly affect gold prices, and in general doing everything I could to buy as close to the bottom of each mini-market and subsequently sell at the top. It didn’t always work out for me but more often than not I was able to trade gold bullion without pulling out my hair, which was already disappearing on its own.

In 2001 gold bottomed out at $252 per ounce. It was at this time that I decided to reevaluate my portfolio. Over the next two years I sold 90% of my gold bullion. Before you pull out the calculator to see how much money I lost by selling, let me elaborate. I exchanged the majority of my gold bullion for pre-1933 gold coins, mostly $20 Double Eagles. I bought PCGS-certified versions of the coins and I developed a new strategy: buy, store and forget.

Rather than using my days to study the intricacies of the gold bullion market I simply stored the coins in my safety deposit box and used my time to study the U.S. economy, and what I discovered only strengthened my faith in my strategy. In 10 years home prices grew by 60% on average, but income had only risen 2% in that same time. The vast majority of financial services companies were doing well, but I was hard-pressed to find any manufacturing or production data that could justify such growth.

We all know what happened next: stocks and real estate values plummeted and gold rose to over $1900 per ounce. The U.S. government is on the verge of collapse, and our dollar is practically insolvent. In my research I found out that the last time we were in a similar situation, the U.S. government outlawed gold bullion and paid gold bullion owners a fixed rate of $20 per ounce for their metal before revaluating gold at $35 per ounce, where the price stayed for the next 40 years. I didn’t know any of this when I switched from gold bullion to certified gold coins and silver, but now that I do I try as hard as I can to educate investors about gold’s past.

If you plan on holding your gold for any length of time and “flipping” gold bullion isn’t in your plans, do yourself a favor and take a serious look at investment-grade rare gold coins. Nothing exotic, just MS62-MS65 Double Eagle coins and/or Indian Head gold coins. They have a numismatic value that tends to increase over time, and they could be exempt from any future government gold bullion confiscation. Do the research, because those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it.

Gold Bullion IRA Plans Gaining Popularity as Government Shutdown Continues

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

The first round of losses that drained over $3 trillion from American’s retirement accounts between 2005-2011 was not enough to convince some IRA holders to diversify their portfolios, and until recently it seemed to some that staying put was the smart move. Stocks, in general, have performed well, and inflation has not been shockingly obvious, at least if you go by our government’s inflation index (the one that doesn’t account for food and energy costs).

The government shutdown has changed all of that, however, as stock brokers are struggling to retain clients and investors are largely refusing to put their money into any type of long-term asset. Gold bullion prices have not changed much since the shutdown began, but the fact that the federal government – and the people we elected to manage our finances – has closed for business is more than enough for some investors to throw up their hands and say, “I’ve had enough!”

Many of these investors are opting to convert their assets into Gold Bullion IRA plans, for a couple of reasons. Gold bullion investments are extremely liquid, meaning they can be turned back into cash at any time. Gold bullion is one of the few IRA investments that you can actually put your hands on, provided you pay the taxes and, if you’re under the age of mandatory withdraws, the early withdraw penalty.

Gold bullion hasn’t exactly shone over the last few months, as it is down 5% in the last 30 days and about 25% year-over-year. Why, then are so many people who are close to retirement choosing to buy gold bullion when our economy is in such a fragile state? Because gold is not fragile. It is solid, it can (and has) withstand the test of time, governments and fiat currencies. While our elected officials fight over how much cash needs to be printed to get us through another couple of months, savvy investors are calculating how much cash they can do without.

Gold Bullion Smuggling on the Rise in India

Friday, September 20th, 2013

In an attempt to curb the country’s insatiable thirst for gold, the Indian government has been dramatically raising gold import costs, yet little has been done to satiate the national appetite and some have resorted to breaking Indian law to get their hands on gold bullion.

Despite assumptions that China was to overtake India as the world’s biggest consumer in 2012 India’s unquenchable thirst for gold held strong in 2012. According to the World Gold Council, the country imported 864.2 tons of gold last year, trumping China’s 776.1 tons. In an effort to bridle this rampant demand the Indian government has raised duties on the yellow metal repeatedly over the last 12 months. Just as many experts warned, however, the gold regulations have resulted in smuggling operations that brought as much as 250 tons of gold into the country illegally last year.

“The hike in customs duty has not stopped the import of gold into the country. It has only changed the route as smugglers earn a profit of around $3,719 on every kilogram of gold smuggled into the country,” said Bachhraj Bamalwa, chairman of the All India Gems and Jewelry Trade Federation.

It’s no surprise that India is still so hungry for gold, and gold investors can expect to see such demand for the foreseeable future. India’s appetite for gold has been a factor in the yellow metal’s current bull market, in which it has increased over 400 percent in the last 12 years. As demand for physical gold bullion and rare gold coins shows no signs of abating this year look for the gold price to rise despite the wishes of governments and central banks.

Gold Bullion Prices Fall As Investors Sell Heavily

Tuesday, May 14th, 2013

Monday’s trading session saw something that has been the exception rather than the rule for the last few months – more investors were selling gold bullion than buying gold bullion. Yes, the gold spot price has been mostly falling or flat for the better part of the year, but how have gold bullion investments figured into the mix?

While investors have shed gold derivatives like pool accounts, exchange traded funds (ETFs) and gold futures contracts, savvy conservative investors have been stocking up on gold bullion bars and bullion coins like Canadian Maple Leafs and South African Krugerrands. The U.S. Mint has reported record sales figures all year, and the Royal Canadian Mint just announced that the numismatic division of its gold coin program was going to expand due to the increased demand. How, then, can gold bullion prices fall with so much demand for physical gold?

The answer lies in the volume of trading that is done via the physical gold bullion market as opposed to the derivatives market. Institutional investors, large banks and 401(k) managers rarely, if ever, invest in physical gold. It is too cumbersome and storage is too costly after vault and insurance charges. Instead, they purchase funds that represent gold.

The average household investor, on the other hand, prefers to keep the gold in his or her hands as a safety net in case our economy collapses. Bars and coins make American investors feel safe. Even though lots of bullion is being bought right now, the percentage of the gold market that is made up of gold bullion is small enough that outflows from derivatives markets overshadow any gains made because of physical buyers.  If this trend continues, gold could drop as low as $1200 before the institutions start to purchase again.

The Downside to Saving in Gold Bullion…There Isn’t Any!

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012

Unfortunately, when savings are held in cash, they lose real return over time due to inflation. To effectively appraise an investment’s worth is to correlate it with an asset which can not be inflated, hence, gold. This is the manner in which investors can calculate in real terms how the investment is upholding.

All of the wealth we are amassing will one day be spent. Whoever spends it first (us or whomever we have left it to…hopefully, not the cat) will have as much as inflation dictates. A 15% gain in dollars is only 9% in real terms if USD inflation was 6% during that time frame. A money-market return of 1% is a losing investment if denominated in something inflating at 3%. This is the importance of adjusting for inflation so that you can see in real terms where your investments are in terms of profit.

Savings in gold from 1998 till 2010 would have produced a 332% gain with no purchasing power lost. After inflation and taxes, one could purchase 50% more in goods and services than in 1998. If the savings would have been in cash, it would have been a losing investment. I’ll even remind you that from 1998-2001 gold was in a state of oblivion and lost a third of its value in the fall of 2008. After all that, the profits of gold bullion savings are unsurpassable! Now, that’s a true safe-haven.

Using gold as a savings medium will obliterate the erosion in the dollar. If that isn’t convincing enough, read on. Since 2000 (when measured in both dollars and gold), the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 4.7% in dollar terms, but dropped 82.5% when calculated in gold grams. If you had an investment of $10,000 on January 1, 2000, it would total just $10,740 today (apart from dividends), but, wait…this will make you sick, in gold it is valued at only $1,750! That is to say that investments made in the Dow Jones Industrial Agency Index have not only lost money in real terms, they are worth scrap when calculated in gold.

Following are other types of losses:

  • When looked at the profit from stocks, here’s what we find. The S&P is behind 15.1% in dollars since 2000 and has lost a whopping 85.8% next to gold. If you are unfortunate enough to be the holder of an S&P index fund, you can be certain about two things: you have less dollars than what you started with (not including dividends) and have cascaded when correlated with gold.
  • As for tech stocks, they show a monstrous backslide of 38% in dollars during the same time period, but cash entrusted in the sector has lost 89.7% when computed in gold grams.
  • Hong Kong’s stock market, one of the leading exchanges in Asia, exhibits an accrual of 6% in dollars. Nevertheless, it surrendered 82.3% when appraised in gold.
  • The primary stock market for UK companies is down 22.4% since 2000 when valued in dollars, but has slumped 87.1% in gold grams.

What is going on here? Apparently, measuring portfolios in dollars exaggerates performance in real terms. This isn’t to say that one shouldn’t invest in stocks. It means that one must:

  1. be aware of how results compare to gold or other real assets that one might buy with whatever currency one is dealing with
  2. regulate brokerage statements to allow for currency weakness
  3. not confide in stocks in general to outpace inflation

But, don’t think it is just investments that are deteriorating. Everything we use in our world is being depreciated, from what we eat to our modes of transportation and even our universities. We won’t see any profits if we don’t stop and think now about the long-term erosion of the dollar and how we can get past it.

Many experts have come to only one conclusion for combating the destruction of the dollar and that is by investing in gold. The dollars that are deposited and saved in a money-market account will progressively lose value every year. Actually, monies deposited into a simple savings account in 2000 have lost an inconceivable 25% of their purchasing power since then. On the other hand, if those savings were denominated in gold, the wealth would have not only been protected but increased. It is understood that this trend will carry on as well as pick up the pace. You best bet for your economic outlook is to cash in earnings every now and then and save them in precious metals. If, after reading this, you come to the right conclusion, you will not save the bulk of your savings in any currency because when compared to them, there is no shortcoming when saving in gold bullion!

Gold Bullion Investment…Still The Top Choice

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

There has to be a way out of this mess for investors as well as private citizens looking to preserve their wealth. The global economy is shaking down all who engage in their corrupt way of thinking, yet gold bullion investment still offers a way to overcome this horror and maintain the wealth we so diligently have tried to reap profit from.
Why is gold bullion investment still a top choice?

For starters, the U.S. dollar is essentially and technically very weak and could experience a radical fall. On the other hand, other countries are unwilling to see their currencies appreciate and are counteracting the present fall of the U.S. dollar. With this in mind, we just might already be in the early moments of an enormous global currency debasement, which may see tangibles, and most particularly gold reap the benefits it is entitled to.

Secondly, numerous professionals consider that, when the retail investing public wakes up and realizes what is right in front of their noses, they will search for an option that does not include paper currencies and financial assets, thus creating a mammoth investment claim for the precious yellow metal. In a situation like this, it just might be practical and wise to own gold bullion as well as have a stake in select mining companies.

The financial deterioration in the United States is another great reason to turn to gold. Within just a few years, the United States Federal Government budget surplus has been altered into an unimaginable deficit which is not going anywhere anytime soon. Simultaneously, the existing account deficit has attained levels which traditionally foreshadow unrelenting failure for the United States.

Monetization is the name of the current game which, ultimately, only benefits the precious yellow metal. The lawmakers within the United States are concerned about the deflation scenario given the extraordinary debt in the United States. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is on record as alleging the Fed has the facility to issue new currency and will use it to fight deflation, should it be required. Copycat countries are pursuing in America’s footsteps and global money supply is precipitating. This is generally consistent with an atmosphere which makes gold shine brighter than usual.

Mine stock and customary demand are experiencing a gap which seems to widen every year. The yearly gold mined is roughly 2500 tons with traditional demand (jewelry, industrial users, etc.) continuing to go beyond this by a significant margin for a number of years. Some of this deficit has been satisfied by gold recycling, but selling from various central banks has been a crucial resource of above-ground stock. Not only is the gap widening, but the supply of mined gold will most probably lessen in the next three to four years. A mixture of traditional demand which will persist in going beyond mine supply, buying driven by ongoing world-wide economic shortcoming, and an anticipated abatement in mine supply, will more than likely generate enormous mid-term shortages. Mine supply will be reduced in the next several years, without regard to gold prices, because of a swing away from high grading and the expected depletion of actual mines as well as issues related to the environment.

Central Bank Gold is working to satisfy the stretch amidst supply and demand. They have been activated mostly through the leasing system, which expedited producer hedging and financial conjecture. There is proof that between 10,000 and 16,000 tonnes (could even be between 30-50% of all Central Bank Gold) is presently in the market. Bullion banks are the counter party in the transaction and are responsible for the reimbursement to the Central Banks.

Interest rates are rather low which means there is not adequate momentum to generate higher prices in the out years. Accordingly, there is inducement to hedge while, at the same time, a reduction in their existing hedge positions which, conclusively, is leaving the market with less of the precious metal.

Escalating gold prices and low interest rates put off financial guesswork on the short side. When gold prices were incessantly declining and financial speculators could access Central Bank Gold at a nominal leasing rate (0.5-1% per year), sell it and reinvest the profits in a high yielding bond or Treasury bill, the trade was regarded as a lay-up. The majority of the investors were in on it and currently there are many stale short positions, which must be satisfied with real purchases. Nonetheless, these kinds of trades are no longer necessary with declining interest rates and rising gold prices.

The central banks are approaching a position where they will be unwilling to make gold more available to the market. For example, far Eastern central banks are amassing gargantuan quantities of US dollars while, at the same time, believed to be gold patrons with the goal of branching farther from the US dollar.

The popularity of gold is rising. Countries that are entering the vanguard of the economic setting are perceiving gold with a much more optimistic attitude. Important developing countries such as China, Indian, and Russia have been acquiring gold. Indeed, China with a population of 1.3 billion people currently set up a National Gold Exchange and slackened control over the precious metal. Within a couple of years, demand in China is projected to ascend relentlessly and could reach 500 tons.

The belief that gold can and should be money is Gold as money is achieving acceptance globally. Islamic countries are evaluating a currency sustained by gold (the gold dinar). The new President of Argentina recommended, throughout his campaign, a gold backed peso as a remedy for the financial devastation which his country has endured, and Russia is contemplating an entirely convertible currency with gold support.

The restricted size of the overall gold market bestows remarkable leverage. All the physical gold in existence is valued somewhat above $1 trillion US dollars while the worth of all publicly traded gold companies world-wide is unbecoming at $100 billion US dollars. When the fundamentals eventually promote a strong flood of capital towards gold and gold equities, the trillions upon trillions worth of paper money could thrust both to perplexing magnitudes which is why gold bullion investment remains the top choice here in America as well as throughout the world.

It Is Still A Perfect Time To Buy Gold Bullion

Friday, December 30th, 2011

Some people have not yet entered the gold market for fear that the best is over, yet the time is still ripe to buy gold bullion. If you’re looking for a true manner in which to multiply and preserve wealth, then you must take the initiative now and jump into the market. It’s not just for Armageddon thinkers who conceal their gold under wooden floor boards.

Since 2001, gold has progressed massively from $260 to its $1,920 peak. Where can it possibly go from there? Some believe a larger gold price correction is in store for the precious metal, bigger than the recoil to $1,600 in September.

Remaining well read and calm are the only ways to make wise judgment calls. Most of the reasons gold has increased in the past ten years are still in effect: the gold ‘rush’ reflects restlessness about the ability of the United States to lessen its budget deficit, the Federal Reserve’s easy money strategy, the opposite relationship that gold has to the dollar, and yet another impending dose of Fed quantitative easing will continue gold’s rise to the top. Gold is perceived as a hedge against all currencies and, apparently, the belief is that the more dollars you generate, the more you debase the dollar thus making gold rise higher. The quantitative easing of 2009 drove gold from $900 per ounce to $1,200, animating the market’s state of mind.

• Even Barrick Gold, one of the world’s largest mining companies based in Canada, incremented $5 billion to reinforce its gold hedges so that it would be completely open to the changes in the gold price.

When gold reached $1,300 an ounce in September 2010, central banks such as China, India, Russia, and Thailand continued purchasing gold reserves. The strategy here is that central banks are searching for manners in which to curtail dollar exposure and have been buying anything the International Monetary Fund does not want. Not only are the governments in India and China taking over the global gold market, but also regular citizens have realized the importance of this trend. China is currently the world’s main gold producer, and its five-year plan is pushing its citizens to buy more gold. They can do so in two ways: on a planned Pan Asia Gold Exchange or in gold stores all over China, where buying gold jewelry has skyrocketed. The previous year, the shopping mall Caibai in Shanghai yielded $1 billion in gold bar and jewelry sales.

If the other side of the world realizes that gold is still cheap enough to profit from, we must heed their actions and also understand that it is still an ideal time to buy gold bullion now.

The 5 Best Gold Bullion Investments Of 2011

Friday, June 10th, 2011

Gold bullion investments have become increasingly popular in the past few years as the overall demand for gold has skyrocketed due to a failing United States economy. It seems like more investors than ever before are beginning gold bullion investments in order to protect their wealth from the devastating effects of a weakening economy, most importantly the inflation that is running rampant across our nation. Fortunately, gold is one of the most effective inflationary hedges, and today I would like to point out the 5 best gold bullion investments available to you:

1. American Eagle Coins – These coins are produced in the United States and they are the most popular gold bullion coins available. Despite being 22 karat coins, they typically demand a higher premium because of their origin.

2. South African Krugerrand Coins – These coins are produced in South Africa and they are also some of the most popular bullion coins available. They are also 22 karat, yet they typically demand smaller premiums because of their origin.

3. Canadian Maple Leaf Coins – These coins are produced in Canada and they are favored by investors who want the purest gold possible. Consisting of pure 24 karat gold, they typically demand the highest premium because of this purity.

4. Credit Suisse Bars – These bars are the most common investment-grade bullion bars because their simple design and low premium makes them highly liquid across the world.

5. Pamp Suisse Bars – These bars are the most exclusive investment-grade bullion bars because of their beautiful design that makes them very valuable for investors seeking visually-appealing gold bars.

Investors interested in gold bullion investments can contact directly for friendly assistance and solid investment direction.

Steve Kickner

Another Look at American Silver Eagle Bullion

Monday, April 12th, 2010

Maybe it’s worthwhile to take another look at the American Silver Eagle bullion as an instrument for investment. The American Silver Eagle bullion has never ceased to amaze us since its launch in 1986. It is one investment medium that has remained true to investors’ trust.

This quarter of 2010, the American Silver Eagle bullion again flexed its muscles, soaring to 7,157,000 ounces in sales. This figure is higher by 26 percent over the same first quarter of 2009. Sales in January reached 2,773,500 ounces, dipped to 2,050,000 ounces in February but soared again to 3,057,000 ounces in March.

The January numbers easily surpassed the 1,900,000 ounces sold in January 2009. Despite drop in February sales the American Silver Eagle managed to make February the second best February ever behind February 2009. These records were achieved despite the fact that only the American Silver Eagle Dollar was the only variant available for sale during the first quarter.

The sales numbers are apparently good signs of a promising 2010. If expectations are realized, this will mean that 2010 is a run-up of a terrific surge that began in 2008 through 2009.

Yearly sales of 200 until 2009 are the following:

Year                Ounces                Value

2000                9,133,000          45,100,650
2001                8,827,500          38,571,165
2002               10,827,500        48,267,945
2003               9,153,500           45,495,680
2004               9,617,000          64,016,840
2005              8,405,000          63,296,100
2006              10,021,000        116,425,840
2007              9,887,000          133,803,310
2008              19,583,500         286,451,715

Sub-Total    177,848,000      1.271,574,045

2009            28,766,500 –

Total           206,614,500 –

Please note the increase in value in relation to ounces sold starting the year 2004.

Steve Kickner

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