How to Buy Silver Bullion in Canada
Every savvy investor worth their weight in gold is best served learning how to buy silver bullion in Canada. Sure, when it comes to investing in commodities, gold often takes the cake. As well it should. Gold has many practical use cases in industry and is the king of precious metals. That said, the reality is, no matter what your weapon of choice is when it comes to investing, diversification should always be a part of a long term strategy.
At the present moment, a single ounce of gold will cost over $2,000 Canadian. Compare that to silver which is just over $20 an ounce and it's easy to see why silver can be just as attractive to investors. The prospect of buying silver bullion in Canada might be an especially good proposition for somebody just starting out.
The reason is two-fold. First, novice investors in commodities love the idea of owning a lot of something at a cheap price, or at least what they perceive to be a cheap price. Secondly, the price of silver typically rises and falls alongside the price of gold. That means generally speaking anybody looking for the capital gains associated with investing in gold will probably consider buying silver too.
Both silver and gold also share many of the same practical uses. Both are used in industrial lines of work in manufacturing. Large amounts of both can be found in electronics, jewellery and of course, good old fashioned currency.
Now is as good a time as any to explore investing in commodities. Here’s everything you need to know about how to buy silver bullion in Canada.
Options for Buying Silver Bullion in Canada
Many novice investors think that the word bullion means something special, or that it only refers to buying precious metals in the form of gold or silver bars. In actuality, the word bullion mainly refers to precious metals being in a pure form. That’s very important to know as an investor. At the same time, the Royal Canadian Mint and many of Canada’s top precious metals investing firms already know that investors are looking to buy bullion. It’s common knowledge. Much of the jewellery, coins and products we use on a day-to-day basis that contain silver or gold contain merely a mix of the metals, not a pure version. People generally don’t invest in alloy metals unless those metals make up the spare change in their pocket.
So with that said, there are many different forms of silver bullion available for purchase. Let’s break each of them down.
Silver Bullion Coins
Silver bullion coins aren’t just a great investment, they are a great family heirloom that can be passed down from generation to generation. They act as a great investment and collectible. There are three characteristics that define the collectible nature of silver bullion coins:
- They are scarce.
- They are in demand.
- They have an attractive design.
As any investor knows, supply and demand have a direct impact on the price of a given commodity. The more silver there is to go around, the less valuable it is. The attractive design of silver bullion coins is really what can make it collectible.
The Royal Canadian Mint does the best job of designing cool silver bullion coins. Each coin the government agency produces has a unique hand-crafted Canadian maple leaf etched on the front of it. The silver bullion coins also let buyers know exactly how many ounces of pure silver live in each individual coin. The coins are very delicate, and a truly passionate investor would only handle them by hand wearing gloves. Both pure silver and pure gold are very soft metals. The last thing any investor would want is to scratch, tarnish or bend silver coins they intend to see appreciate in value.
Silver coins are the best way for the small-time/novice investor to get in the game. It’s inexpensive and it puts a physical asset into their hands that people can touch and observe. In a day and age where financial instruments are traded digitally and in the cloud, digital currency included, having a physical commodity as a store of value in a portfolio is a major selling point for many investors.
Why Silver Coins Cost More Than Bullion
Once a coin loses its luster, it loses value. That’s one of the downsides of owning silver coins. The upside to owning silver coins is that investors buying them will receive the coins in uncirculated condition. It makes sense that government agencies producing coins for public sale are called Mints. They literally sell their products to people in mint condition.
The most popular form of silver coins are called proof coins. They get struck more than one time and their designs are typically very intricate. This makes proof coins very shiny. The shine makes them more attractive and thus makes them more attractive to the eyes of investors.
One of the great things about investing in silver coins versus the bullion variety is that they can be purchased in both lightweight and heavyweight forms. It’s actually possible to buy as little as 1/25 of an ounce, and typically, a minting agency can sell coins that are as heavy as one kilogram (which is about 2.2 pounds).
Given that the price of one ounce of silver is only fluctuating between $15 and $20 over the past year, those serious about investing in precious metals probably aren’t going to buy just 1/25 ounces of silver. For such a small amount, they’d be investing less than a dollar. At the same time, spending $20,000 to acquire coins isn’t usually what investors do either. Though it is possible, at that level an investor would be more likely to own bars of bullion or invest in a traditional financial instrument like a stock that may offer some exposure to silver rather than buying coins.
Let’s learn more about the other popular option in owning physical silver.
Investing in Silver Bars
In contrast to silver coins which typically cost more (and are more valuable) silver bars represent the lowest cost entry point for investors. It makes logical sense. Striking coins and imprinting designs on them requires more craftsmanship, machinery and labour than putting together silver bars. There’s also just something about silver bars that just seems more organic and pure to investors who perhaps consider themselves to be true connoisseurs of precious metals.
What’s also cool about silver bars is that they come with serial numbers to ensure security and accountability. They are stamped with their weight and fineness so the true value is always evident. Bars also come in a uniform shape that is easily recognizable even to people who don’t have any experience in precious metals. This also makes silver bars easier to store and count.
Buying the Right Amount in a Silver Bar
A silver bar can weigh as much as a kilogram and as little as one gram. The nature of its shape means it would be completely impractical if not impossible to buy 1/25 of a bar the same way an investor can buy a coin that small. Most serious investors don’t buy a kilogram either. The most common volume at which to trade a silver bar would be an ounce at a time.
Why Investors Should Buy Silver Coins and Silver Bars
Investing in silver and gold is generally seen as a great way to hedge against a recession or dive in the economy. It’s always been that way. When the stock market goes down and the real estate industry is struggling, precious metals typically increase in value.
That said, during any global economic downturn, the prices of most if not all forms of investing can take a serious drop. The best ways to make a portfolio bulletproof involve taking three simple steps:
- Not investing more than personal risk tolerance allows.
- Having a long-term investing strategy, even when short-term outcomes are the main focus.
- Diversifying one’s portfolio across different asset classes and instruments.
Keep in mind that investing in gold and silver are only two options, and it doesn’t always have to mean investing in bars or coins. Both precious metals can be held in IRAs. There is also the option of investing in stocks, bonds, real estate and even digital currencies like Bitcoin as part of both short-term, mid-term and retirement investing strategies.
Regardless of what an individual’s investing strategy may or may not involve, there’s no better time than now to learn more about investing in silver coins and silver bars.