With over 30 years of investment experience, I’ve weathered my share of ups and downs.
Even though there are no guarantees when it comes to investing, the one constant I’ve seen is that people flock to safe-haven assets when times get tough.
And gold is at the top of the list.
Used as a means of exchange longer than any other currency ever created, it offers benefits you can’t find with other investments (which we’ll discuss later).
When it comes to this precious metal, you have many options.
So we’ve done the research and put together this list of the 5 best gold investments for 2023.
We also understand that these don’t suit everyone, that’s why we’ve carefully presented the risks and benefits for each so you can determine what option is right for you.
But first, a quick disclaimer.
Gold & Silver Central is for informational and educational purposes only. We don’t claim to be financial advisors and can’t guarantee that anything from this list will make you money.
However, we do guarantee that we’ll provide you with reliable, unbiased information so that you can make an informed decision.
After all, when it comes to protecting and growing your wealth, having trustworthy information is critical.
Should You Invest in Gold in 2023?
Gold surged over 10% in the first part of 2022, driven by inflationary and geopolitical concerns.
However, towards mid-year, it gave back those gains as fears of a global recession weighed on all commodity prices.
Nevertheless, it rebounded at the end of the year due to continued high inflation and ended up 6.6% for the year.
As we enter 2023, inflation is at a multi-decade high for most major economies.
For example, in the United States, inflation ran 6-7% for 2022, well above the Fed’s target rate of 2%.
And that rate doesn’t look likely to ease in the near term due to:
- COVID government stimulus ending
- Continued supply chain issues
- High consumer demand
- Tight labor supply and pressure to raise wages
- Continued land war in Eastern Europe
In addition, Goldman Sacks predicts a 35% chance of a global recession in 2023, putting pressure on stocks, bonds, and real estate.
Already in many markets across the US, we are seeing a decline in home prices as higher interest rates lower consumer demand.
During uncertain times, people often turn to gold for unique benefits not found with more traditional, paper-backed assets.
1) Prices tend to move opposite the stock market – gold has historically risen when stocks fall.
2) Gold prices tend to keep pace and even outperform inflation. In contrast, stocks and bonds tend to underperform during periods of high inflation.
This makes it an excellent tool for preserving wealth. In fact, it’s known to be a safe haven during times of economic uncertainty and geopolitical crisis.
3) Since its price isn’t correlated with other investments, this precious metal offers diversification that can’t be achieved with more traditional assets, like stocks, bonds, and real estate.
However, as with anything else, it is not without risk.
Though gold tends to rise over longer timeframes, as a single-class asset, prices can be volatile in the short term.
And since it is a physical commodity, it doesn’t provide additional income streams, like dividends or interest payments.
In addition, when the economy is doing well, investors look to other assets that provide higher returns, putting pressure on gold prices.
Though we see continued increased demand for precious metals in 2023, we recommend you do your own research and consult with a financial advisor before taking any action.
This being said, let’s take a look at the 5 best gold investments for 2023, in our opinion.
1. Gold IRA
When Congress passed the Taxpayer Relief Act in 1997, they expanded the types of assets that could be included in an IRA account – and the Precious Metal IRA was born.
Rather than traditional IRAs that are limited to paper assets, a gold IRA allows you to own physical gold, silver, platinum, and palladium in your individual retirement account.
Owning physical metals appeals to many who are looking to diversify their portfolios.
As we have seen, gold prices tend to move contrary to stocks and bonds, making it a great hedge to reduce overall portfolio volatility.
Also, when you hold it in your IRA, you can defer or even eliminate capital gains taxes, allowing your investment to grow tax-free.
However, these accounts have unique reporting and storage requirements not found with traditional IRAs.
Therefore, you will need to open your account with a custodian specializing in precious metal IRAs and can handle the specific reporting required by the government.
Plus, you can’t take physical possession of your gold, or it’s considered a withdrawal. Therefore, you have to store your physical asset with an IRS-approved depository.
Fortunately, there are companies that specialize in exactly that.
And one of the best is Augusta Precious Metals.
#1 Recommended Gold IRA Company in the US
(With the lowest fees and strongest reputation!)
Named the Best Gold IRA Company Overall in 2022 by Money Magazine, their specialists can assist and answer any questions you might have – without any pressure to buy.
And when you’re ready to open an account, they will be with you every step of the way – making the process straightforward, transparent, and easy.
Reasons to Invest
- Investments grow tax-free
- Provides diversification
- It can’t be hacked or stolen online
- Inflation protection
Reasons to Avoid
- Higher fees than traditional IRAs
- More challenging to sell than stocks or bonds
2. Gold Mining Stocks
These provide another avenue to invest in this shiny precious metal.
When you buy these stocks, you are investing in the companies that mine and produce physical gold.
Basically, you go to the source.
And since these companies can increase production and reduce costs, leading to higher profits, their stock prices can provide higher returns than just investing in pure physical metal.
Moreover, many top players in the sector also mine other metals, diversifying their operations and providing stability when gold is out of favor.
In this case, you won’t need to open a special account if you want to hold shares in your IRA.
The good news is that many companies pay dividends, providing you with an additional income stream.
Keep in mind, not all gold stocks outperform gold prices.
Therefore, you must investigate carefully and ensure that the company you’re considering is solvent and has a solid management team.
For example, many operate in politically unstable regions, increasing investment risk.
So it’s best to stick with proven players.
Although detailed stock recommendations are beyond the scope of this article, if you’re considering diversifying with gold mining stocks, one company to consider is Barrick Gold.
Their goal is to be the most valuable mining company in the world.
To reach this end, this Canadian-based company only acquires Tier One mining assets, defined as mines with high potential:
- to produce more than 500,000 ounces annually
- at least 10+ years of productive life
- low-cost operations based on the cost per ounce to produce
By focusing on higher-producing, longer-lasting mines, Barrick anticipates annual average gold production to be 6.5 million ounces (including their copper production) through 2032.
In addition, they have paid down debt and sold non-core assets.
Because of that, Barrick had a net cash balance at the end of 2022, allowing them to repurchase shares and pay an attractive dividend.
However, any time you invest in individual stocks, you need to do your homework. Don’t just take our (or anyone else’s) word for it.
Not all mining companies are created equal, and there are a lot of risky players out there.
Reasons to Invest
- Many pay dividends
- Don’t need to open a special IRA to own shares
- Stock prices have the potential to outperform gold prices
Reasons to Avoid
- Time-consuming to research companies
- Volatile prices
- Increased risk in operations
- Returns depend on effective management.
- Can lose your entire investment in case of bankruptcy
3. Gold ETFs
Don’t have the time to research individual companies?
Then a gold-focused exchange-traded fund (ETF for short) may be a good option.
Instead of owning just one or two companies, you’ll have a diversified portfolio of miners. That way, you reduce your risk in the event one business fails.
These funds can also own a physical metal, giving you the advantage of owning it, but without the inconvenience of storage fees or having to find a buyer when you’re ready to sell.
Gold ETFs are traded just like stocks, so you can own shares in a traditional IRA.
However, they won’t protect your investment in the case of a sustained decline in gold prices.
Another thing to keep in mind is that ETFs have management fees and commissions, which can affect your overall returns.
But for those of you who want to avoid having to research individual companies or buy physical precious metals, they can provide an affordable alternative.
If you’re interested in an ETF that focuses on physical gold, check out SPDR Gold Shares. This fund holds over 33 million ounces in its vaults, and its overall value is $62.6 billion.
Another ETF option is iShares Gold Trust, which holds 15 million ounces of the shiny metal.
For mining stocks, VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF may be a good option.
At $13.2 billion in assets, this is one of the largest gold mining ETFs. This fund invests in the largest gold mining companies.
At the time of this article, the top five holdings (making up 45% of the fund) were:
- Newmont Corporation
- Barrick Gold
- Franco-Nevada Corporation (more on this later)
- Agnico Eagle Mines
- Wheaton Precious Metals
Other popular mining ETFs are VanEck Gold Miners, VanEck Junior Gold Miners, and iShares MSCI Global Gold Miners.
These can be an excellent investment for people looking to diversify their portfolios without the need for time-consuming research.
However, they aren’t without risks. So be sure to consult your financial advisor before making any decisions.
Reasons to Invest
- Less risk than going with an individual company
- Lower expense ratio compared to mutual funds
- Less research time required
- Can hold both mining stocks and physical gold
- You can hold shares in a traditional IRA
Reasons to Avoid
- Doesn’t protect you from declining prices or industry risk
- Some hold riskier, unproven miners
- Have to pay management fees and commissions
- Less control over your investments
4. Gold Royalties and Streams
Metal streaming and royalty companies are another option when looking to diversify with alternative investments.
They pay an up-front fee to a miner in exchange for a percentage of the revenue and the right to purchase the metal from a specific mine at a guaranteed price.
These companies are well-positioned to benefit from rising gold prices without the risk or overhead of running a mining operation.
Also, they provide greater diversification than a pure mining play, as most will invest in many different mines. In the event one fails, they still receive revenue from the other ones.
Furthermore, many invest in mines at different stages of operation. This minimizes the downtime and start-up costs associated with bringing new mines online.
However, these companies come with their own set of risks.
One of the main risks is that they need a lot of capital to purchase mining rights. They can raise money by taking on new debt or issuing new stock.
If they take on debt, the company is responsible for interest payments and repaying the principal.
If their mines are profitable, no problem. But if not, the company must pay back the debt from its cash reserves.
Some companies prefer a debt-free balance sheet, so instead of taking on debt, they issue new shares when they need to raise capital.
This dilutes the ownership of the company. If the mine is successful, the increased profits will offset the increased number of shares. But if not, the share price will suffer.
Also, they need to ensure that they invest in the right mines. If they choose poorly, it can significantly impact their profitability.
One major player in the sector is Franco-Nevada Corporation.
This Canadian-based company has a diversified portfolio of mining agreements, with gold making up 55% of its total revenue for the third quarter of 2022.
Franco-Nevada generates a significant amount of cash flow from its mining agreements. They use this cash flow to fund new contracts and increase the dividend paid to shareholders.
In fact, the company recently reached a milestone of increasing its dividend every year since its IPO in 2008 – that’s 15 consecutive years.
The company also has a debt-free balance sheet, a rarity in the mining industry.
Though past performance does not guarantee future returns, its stock price has historically outperformed other gold mining stocks and even the price of gold, so it might be something worth considering.
Reasons to Invest
- Lower operating costs
- Benefits from rising gold prices
- Wider margins than gold miners
- Lower overall risk
Reasons to Avoid
- May dilute shares or take on debt to raise funds
- Management decisions are critical in selecting profitable mining operations
5. Gold Futures
If one of your questions is “What is the best gold investment speculation”, then gold futures may be the choice for you.
These allow you to use leverage to speculate on gold prices. A futures contract is an agreement to buy or sell a commodity at some point in the future.
This date is known as the expiration date.
These contracts were created to allow producers (miners) to lock in prices so that they have a guaranteed price for their gold production.
On the other side, manufacturers know exactly what they’re paying for materials so they can better manage their cost of production months in advance.
Futures trade in 100-ounce contracts. At the time of this article, the price is $1830, meaning that each contract is valued at $183,000.
However, instead of paying the full amount, you only need to cover the margin, which per COMEX, is $7400 per contract.
As the price of gold fluctuates, your margin account value will also fluctuate.
If this precious metal goes up, no problem. For every dollar increase, you make $100.
However, if its price falls, your account goes down, and you have to make up the difference to maintain the $7400 margin requirement.
This is known as a margin call.
So for a very small funding amount, you can own a lot of gold futures.
If gold moves in the right direction, you can make a lot of money very quickly. However, if it moves against you, you have the potential to lose more than your original investment.
If your margin drops below the required amount, your broker may close your position, and you will be responsible for any losses.
Also, when the contract hits the expiration date, you will need to fulfill the purchase or sale if you’re still holding it.
For example, if you bought gold, you will need to pay the full purchase price on this date. Likewise, if you sold, you will need to produce the amount of gold specified in your contract.
For this reason, most speculators close their positions before the contract expires.
This is known as contract roll-over – speculators close the current month’s contract and open a new contract with a future expiration date.
Speculating with futures can make a lot of money very quickly. For this reason, they are a popular pitch for internet trading system promoters.
Unfortunately, most of these never live up to the hype.
You get better odds in Vegas!
And on a personal note, I once traded silver futures.
The margin is less than gold, but they work the same way.
I opened an account for $5000, and in less than a week, my account was down over 50%, though silver had only moved a few cents.
I barely slept that week, completely stressed out about my position. I knew then that this type of investing wasn’t for me.
So unless you’re a sophisticated investor, I would avoid gold futures and consider other options on our list.
Reasons to Invest
- High leverage
- Small initial contribution amount (margin)
Reasons to Avoid
- You can lose more than your initial investment
- Margin calls
- Need a broker that specializes in future contracts
- 97% of active traders lose money
6. Coins and Bullion (Bonus)
If you want to be able to hold in your hands, buying physical coins and bullion may be the perfect option.
No other asset has the same emotional appeal as gold. You can feel its weight as you admire its brilliance.
No wonder this precious metal has been at the center of human civilization for more than 4000 years.
And if you want an asset you can leave your heirs – nothing compares to its ease and convenience.
However, owning gold coins and bullion comes with some drawbacks.
The biggest is keeping it safe.
Having a few coins is one thing, but insuring and protecting it becomes a primary concern when you have a more significant investment.
Also, this precious metal doesn’t produce income like dividend-paying stocks, bonds, or even real estate.
To make a profit, you’re relying on the fact that the price will be higher in the future than what you paid for it.
You’ll find plenty of companies online that sell gold. You can even purchase gold from local collectors or pawn shops.
But make sure you do your research to avoid any unwanted surprises.
That’s why we recommend Augusta Precious Metals.
When you buy from this firm, you can rest assured knowing you’re purchasing the highest quality precious metal coins and bullion at competitive prices.
And best of all?
They are the best in the industry to help you with Gold IRAs as well.
Reasons to Invest
- Physical asset
- Can’t be hacked or stolen online
Reasons to Avoid
- Risk of theft
- Doesn’t produce income
So, Is Gold a Good Investment in 2023?
Precious metals may be right for some investors and not for others.
If you’re looking to maximize your returns without regard to risk, it may not be the best choice for your goals.
However, with the economic and geopolitical challenges we’re facing, this year may turn out to be the best one to diversify with gold and silver.
If protecting your wealth from the ravaging effects of inflation is important, consider adding one (or two) of these investment ideas to your portfolio.
Personally, we prefer diversifying with a Precious Metal IRA.
If you liked this option too, then start by grabbing your FREE Gold IRA guide here.