(Q) If gold is fluctuating wildly in price I don’t want my new buy order to be held up with some sign up procedures. If one of our readers wants to open an account at BullionVault, how long does your sign up, fund and buy process usually take?
That’s a couple of questions rolled into one. First – money laundering. Yes – we must establish the identity of our customers. This is not too onerous for customers or for us. We take deposits only through the banking system direct from the customer’s bank – which should be trusted internationally (which includes just about every major Western bank). We require our users to submit scans of a photographic id (usually a passport or driving licence) and a scanned bank statement which we check to the source of funds. It’s that easy.
When I helped my three youngest children (ages 3, 5 and 7) start their coin collections this past year, we began by purchasing inexpensive coin folders ($2.99 each) to collect Lincoln Memorial Cents and Jefferson Nickels from the 1940’s to the present.
BullionVault gold is fully allocated, and collected by our vault operators for separate storage exclusively for BullionVault clients before we offer it for sale. Normally for an allocated spot gold trade the buyer still has to pay for collection. With BullionVault your gold is already in the vault where you want it, so you don’t have that extra cost. The difference is fairly minimal, like about 20 cents an ounce, but it means BullionVault gold tends to hold a small premium over the spot price. I guess you can say BullionVault gold is spot gold inclusive of the cost of collection.
You can bet that a low-priced coin is marked less because of the grading company used or none at all. When looking online at eBay for example, the MS or mint state grading might be listed as MS64 by the dealer, when the coin is closer to a MS62 when actually graded by the PCGS in the future. I would only buy something pre-graded or, if it’s a cheap coin say under $10, take a small chance and then send to the PCGS to have it graded for yourself.
Any currency (paper money) in the collection should also be evaluated with a guide book or on eBay to get a rough idea of what they are worth. On eBay, don’t put too much stock in the Buy-It-Now prices. Sometimes these prices are insane and won’t give you much help. You can sort through eBay for closed auction prices. This really what an item is worth.