Buying Gold is often viewed as a safe haven in troubled times .
The price of gold rose almost 20% in 2019 and in the first week of January 2020, gold hit its highest level since 2013 as tensions rose in the Middle East. The gold price has fallen a bit since tensions have reduced but it is still up by 2.1% since Jan 1st 2020 (as at Thursday 10th Jan)
In general, the US dollar and gold prices have an inverse relationship. When the dollar is falling in value, gold prices tend to increase because it becomes cheaper to buy in other currencies. The demand for gold then increases and thus the price. On the other hand, gold prices tend to decrease when the dollar appreciates in value, as it becomes more expensive for foreign investors.
Interest rates also can have an effect on the price of gold . When rates rise it makes other forms of investment more attractive than gold and can result in gold prices falling. When interest rates fall – it can have the opposite effect and gold prices can rise.
Gold should be seen as a long term investment , as a means of providing some protection from an unpredictable economic environment, rather than a mechanism for short-term gains. Many advisers recommend having 10% to 15% of a balanced portfolio held in Gold .
How to Invest in Gold
One of the simplest ways for first time investors to make a low cost gold purchase is to buy by the gram . Because you own grams of a bullion bar and not necessarily the whole bar you cannot have it delivered -so it is stored in a bullion vault. You can sell your gold grams at any time (less some fees) so it is instantly accessible. There are several companies offering to sell gold in Ireland – just Google “Buy Gold in Ireland” to find a few.
You can invest in shares of gold mining companies. This is a more indirect route in investing in gold as you do not personally own the gold. The value of gold mining shares will typically fluctuate up and down, closely following the price of gold. One of thecheapest ways to buy shares in Ireland is through online stockbroker DEGIRO .
See our comparison of share dealing costs and read more about How to Invest in Shares in Ireland
Exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
Gold ETFs are gold securities that are traded on the London Stock Exchange and you can buy and sell shares in them. They essentially track the gold price and can be traded daily through a stockbroker . See more here about buying ETFs in Ireland .
One popular way to own gold is by buying gold coins such as 22-carat gold sovereigns or South African Krugerrands. Coins can be an appropriate gold investment method for smaller investors – especially for people whose view is long term and for whom physical possession is important . Don’t forget to store them somewhere secure and get them insured.
Jewellery : manufacturing costs and the jewellers’ markup mean that jewellery usually sells for a fraction of the purchase price for the first few years of ownership. It should not really be considered as a serious investment. Security is also an issue.