If you believe the increasing amount of reality TV shows, investing in physical gold is as easy as heading to a small patch of land in Alaska, hiring a few people and digging. The truth is, it’s not that easy, and that’s why people who want to profit from precious metals take a much less, well, muddy route to owning and investing in the space. For those new to the metals space, knowing where to go to buy or sell for a fair price is difficult. That’s where APMEX, formerly known as American Precious Metals Exchange, enters the scene. APMEX has become a favorite among precious metals buyers and sellers for a few key reasons [for more gold news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
1. It is a market maker.
APMEX isn’t just a retailer; it has a trading floor and serves as a market maker to investors. This greatly increases the amount of metals it buys and sells, allowing the company to profit on the difference in the spread between the bid and ask price.
In theory, the company should be in a position to offer the most competitive pricing due to its trading activities.
2. It shows you what others are buying.
Investing isn’t about following the herd but if you don’t have a lot of experience as a physical metals investor, knowing where to start your research is helpful. APMEX lists the 40 most popular products on its home page. It encompasses a large range of price points and includes reviews from previous buyers.
3. You receive market updates.
You may want to purchase and stow your precious metal away, but APMEX assumes that you are not only a buyer, but also a student. The company publishes market updates three times per day and a weekly recap at the end of the trading week [see also The Ultimate Guide to Investing in Gold Coils and Bullion].
The company also has a series of educational videos and publications including its “Quick Start Guide to Investing in Precious Metals.”
4. It helps you put metals in your IRA.
If you want to make physical metals part of your tax-advantaged retirement strategy, APMEX has a department dedicated to assisting with the task. Because not all assets meet Internal Revenue Service requirements, APMEX can help you set up a precious metals IRA that meets IRS rules.
5. It is transparent.
When you compare APMEX’s site to its competitors, you notice that all pricing is transparent. For every product, it lists a buy price (the bid) and a sell price (the ask). There are no extra commissions or fees other than shipping charges, which APMEX fully discloses.
For buyers who purchase in bulk, volume discount prices are fully disclosed, with prices based on the most recent market data updated every 60 seconds. The company places the most current spot prices on the home page of its website [see also Why Marc Faber Will Never Stop Buying Gold].
6. It offers 24-hour service.
If you want to lock in the best pricing, APMEX lets you buy and sell 24 hours per day including weekends. Once you commit to an order online, APMEX locks in the price.
The Bottom Line
APMEX’s 3,500-product selection makes it the dealer of choice for many precious metals traders. The company says on its website that it does not promise the lowest prices, but because of the sheer volume of buying and selling, it usually has the lowest price or at least a price that is competitive with other dealers.
There are other online dealers. Before deciding on one, look at all of them. Compare the pricing and features of each. Then, make your decision. You’ll likely find that APMEX’s transparency is the best in the business.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.