Are Gold Dealers Regulated?
Gold‘s unique set of rules may make its sale to consumers quite perplexing; as opposed to stocks and mutual funds which trade on global exchanges. Gold mining operations often occur on local levels with complicated rules surrounding local sales causing confusion for consumers.
Attorneys and state lawmakers alike have asked Congress to introduce additional oversight of the gold industry. One proposed bill requires dealers to disclose coin prices and fees, along with historical value estimation for secondhand precious metals.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) regulates trading of bullion contracts; physical precious metals are not subject to its oversight. Gold dealers must abide by local and state laws. Many also belong to industry associations like LBMA or BNTA, which demonstrate their dedication to ethical business practices that help you ascertain whether they are legitimate.
Some dealers use bait-and-switch tactics. They sell bullion at prices far above its “melt value,” or what the raw material would fetch when melted down and sold as metal. Furthermore, dealers may upsell investors on historical or numismatic coins; for instance some sell a French 20 franc coin called the Rooster for 69% above its melt value.
If a dealer appears to be trying to mislead you, consider checking their record online. There are various consumer review websites dedicated to rating and reviewing gold dealers as well as commodities brokers; this can give an excellent indication of service quality and pricing from each one.
Also important when buying gold is where it comes from. There has been an increased interest in ethically produced gold that does not participate in any conflicts; some dealers claim they offer conflict-free gold; however, this claim can often be misleading without independent verification.
Many gold dealers do not need to report any transactions to the government; however, if your cash purchases exceed $10,000 annually they could become subject to FinCEN’s anti-money laundering rules and be reported. Some dealers are required to verify customer identities before selling precious metals, while some must report all financial transactions to the IRS using Form 1099B; it is important that before making your decision you review all applicable tax laws within your state before purchasing precious metals from any dealer.
Gold dealers are companies that purchase and sell precious metal items. Their offerings may include bullion bars, coins and jewelry as well as storage services; their minimum trade limit usually equals 500 ounces of gold equivalent; they may be required to store it securely as well as add an additional markup that’s often hidden from customers.
Sometimes dealers charge clients for providing advice; fees can range from being calculated as a percentage of assets owned or hourly rates. All fees charged by gold dealers should be clearly detailed within their terms and conditions; any attempt to hide fees should be seen as red flags that should prompt further research.
Most investors who invest in gold do so as part of a diversified portfolio; however, more individuals have begun using coins as retirement savings vehicles. Some dealers have even encouraged this trend by encouraging investors to liquidate securities holdings and place them into self-directed individual retirement accounts (SDIRAs) with precious metals instead. Although tempting, financial professionals do not advise investors take this route when investing.
Gold trading occurs worldwide and thus can be subject to regulatory oversight in various jurisdictions. In the US, for example, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission oversees trading at New York Mercantile Exchange while SEC regulates publicly-traded mining companies while Environmental Protection Agency has implemented rules regarding gold mining operations. Other agencies responsible for specific aspects of industry include Central Bank of Canada, Bank of England and Reserve Bank of India.