Don't Get Scammed, Learn the Truth About Gold Investment Scams

  • Gold prices have been rising in recent years, reaching their highest level since 2011 in June 2019, when gold prices closed at $1,345.80 per ounce.
  • Gold prices have since retreated to $1,359.84 per ounce, still well above the $1,167.80 per ounce price in December 2018.
  • This surge has led to a surge in the number of scams targeting gold investors.
  • Scammers have been hitting up gold investors with emails and cold calls that promise to multiply their money and make their holdings go up in value.
  • However, most of these offers are too good to be true, and investors who fall for them will likely lose money, rather than making it.

Gold prices have been rising in recent years, reaching their highest level since 2011 in June 2019, when gold prices closed at $1,345.80 per ounce. Gold prices have since retreated to $1,359.84 per ounce-still well above the $1,167.80 per ounce price in December 2018.
This surge has led to a surge in the number of scams targeting gold investors. Scammers have been hitting up gold investors with emails and cold calls that promise to multiply their money and make their holdings go up in value. However, most of these offers are too good to be true, and investors who fall for them will likely lose money, rather than making it.



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Understanding Gold Investment Scams

Gold investment scams are numerous, and clever.
Gold investment scams come in many forms, from elaborate fraudulent gold investment schemes to "too good to be true" advertisements for gold bullion products, and even fake gold investment companies.
Gold investment scams are as prevalent now as they've ever been, and more people are being victimized.
The gold investment scams range from unsophisticated to sophisticated. The unsophisticated scams range from phony ads or websites promising unrealistic returns of 5% to 10% per month to sophisticated gold investment scams like Ponzi schemes, rogue or unregistered gold exchanges, and "high-yield" gold investment programs.

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Fake Gold Bars

A scam involving fake gold bars involves fraud, since the gold bars could be of any composition, including tungsten.
Gold Bullion Counterfeiting
Counterfeit gold bars are designed to pass gold authentication tests by gold refiners. Paper certificates for "genuine" gold bullion are similarly counterfeited.
Gold Coins
Gold coin scams are conducted when there is no market for the gold coin in question.
Gold Pool Scams
Gold pool scams involve fraudulent solicitations by companies that promise high returns on investment.
Gold Dust Scams
Gold dust scams are fraudulent schemes that involve the trading of dust for gold bullion.
Gold Bullion Loans
Bullion loans scams involve companies that claim to offer short-term or long-term loans against gold bullion.
Gold Bullion Insurance
Gold bullion insurance scams involve companies offering insurance against gold bullion.
Gold Bullion Exchange (BGX)
Gold Bullion Exchange (BGX) is an online platform that offers gold bullion and coin sales.



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Fake Gold Coins

Some gold coin sellers offer gold coin replicas that look exactly like the real thing. They are fake, made of cheap metals like copper, brass, or aluminum, and are sold as real gold bullion. These coins may be marked up to 10 times the original market price, and when buyers try to resell them, they are rejected by gold buyers.
Gold Coins of Different Sizes
Some gold coin sellers offer gold bullion coins of different sizes. For example, a buyer might purchase a 1 ounce gold coin and a 1/10 ounce gold coin, believing that they are purchasing 2 ounces of gold. Gold buyers do not accept these coins as 2 ounces of gold, as they are different sizes.
Gold Coin Counterfeits
Gold coins are counterfeited every day. Buyers should be especially careful when purchasing gold coins as these can be counterfeited.
Wrong Weight
Some fake sellers promise to deliver pure gold at a specified weight. However, they receive gold bullion of a different weight, and the buyer must make up the difference.

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Fake Gold Bullion

There are many gold bullion scams. One possibility is to purchase a gold coin, only to find out the coin is gold plated.
Gold plated gold bullion may be small fractions of larger coins or gold bullion.
Gold plated gold bullion is a fraud because the buyer is fooled into thinking they are buying gold bullion.
Beware of gold bullion dealers selling gold in coin form that weighs more than the coin's stated gold content.
Beware of gold dealers who won't show you the assaying certificate or government certification.
Beware of gold dealers who won't provide photos or a video certification of gold bullion.
Beware of gold dealers who won't provide government certification of bullion.

Fake Gold ETFs
Gold ETF scams don't offer gold at all. They offer shares of an investment fund that tracks the price of gold within a certain time period.
Beware of gold ETF or "gold-mining" companies that are high flyer stocks and promise unrealistic returns.
Beware of gold ETF or "gold-mining" companies that are selling shares at very high prices.
Beware of gold ETF or "gold-mining" companies that are selling shares at very high prices and promise unrealistic returns.

Gold Stock Scams
Gold stocks can be fraudulent or overvalued.
A fraudulent gold stock scam is to sell a share of gold stock at a high price, but the company doesn't actually own any gold.
An overvalued gold stock scam is to sell shares of a gold stock at a high price, but the stock is actually worth less than its share price.

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gold investment scams

Fake Gold Jewelry

This is obviously a scam. First, gold isn't a suitable material for jewelry. Genuine jewelry has a hardness that doesn't lend itself to gold, which is soft. Second, gold jewelry is too expensive for scammers to bother with.
Fake Gold Coins
These scams are rarer because coins are expensive to produce. But not always. Some coins are relatively common, such as U.S. or Canadian coins, which aren't particularly valuable.
Fake Gold Certificates
The U.S. government stopped issuing gold certificates in 1933, but scammers still try to get you to invest in them. The certificates are merely a piece of paper that promises you gold, but there's nothing backing that promise.