The US markets have been unstable of recent years. No one can deny that. In fact, most would go further, and say that the US economy has been a practical sign of the apocalypse. Recent gains, such as a rise in the job rate and an improving economic outlook, have not inspired investor confidence, seeing as the housing market is still a wild west of high risk with little reward. The precious metals market, on the other hand, has been a (and pardon the pun) gold mine for those who took the chance.
Gains in gold, palladium, platinum, and silver have showed the advantages to betting on a concrete investment. The lesson many people learned from the housing collapse and the stock market tumble is that investing in something nebulous and virtual leaves one open to the possibility of the entire enterprise falling to pieces, but the concrete “realness” of metals and their worth is an attractive bet. It’s not a sure thing, as nothing in the world of investments is, and one must enter the world with that understanding ingrained. But with some foreknowledge and common sense, you can find your way through the wild and into solid precious metals investing.
A safe bet is always gold, as its value has gone up in recent years, due to political maneuvering by certain wings of American government officials and the constant mentioning of the “gold standard” on television news. “Cash for gold” sites and ads have populated the airwaves, putting the impression in the common populace that gold is even more valuable than it already is, thus raising the demand for it more, and raising the prices. The cycle feeds back into itself, and has caused the market for the yellow metal to rise astronomically since 2003. The advent of the “fiscal cliff” controversy caused the prices to rise even higher, where they remain today. The only cloud on the horizon is the improving US economy, and the uncertainty of future actions by the world’s governments.
Despite all this, silver has been the MVP of the market. Seen in the past as the lesser of the metals in terms of precious metals investing, its profile has risen rapidly recently; its value in 2012 grew by 23%, higher than both gold and platinum. Largely due to its uses in construction and in medical equipment, as well as electronics, silver has a bright outlook for the future as well, as the demand for it in such areas can only increase. Stability and almost guaranteed increase is rare in investments, so one should jump on the chance while you can.
In times of relative stability though, platinum is a safe bet. Its rarity means its value doesn’t fluctuate much, whether the market is good or not. Of course, the real secret to success in metal investments is to go for a little bit of everything. Diversification is key, as throwing all your eggs in one basket leaves you at the mercy of world economic stability and current availability. With a little research and some smart maneuvering, your fortune can be worth its weight in gold.