How to keep your Bitcoin safe

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So you followed my advice, put some money in Bitcoin and by now you doubled or tripled your investment. Good for you my friend!

Keep in mind what we’re doing here though. Keeping eggs in different baskets right? Crypto currency is a VERY attractive basket thought and if it ever reaches just a percentage of its true potential…

Anyway, if you bought some coin I’m sure you’re a happy camper and that’s fine but just like you keep your gold and cash in a safe, just don’t leave your money sitting there in an online account. It’s not safe, and if something happens to the company, lets say Coinbase goes under or gets hacked, you may lose your Bitcoin. I know that with reputable companies this is unlikely, but it has happened before and all experts agree on not being a good idea to leave large savings just sitting there.

What do to then?

You have a few options. The idea is to have a cold wallet for the bulk of your coin. Cold storage means storage that is offline and therefore impossible to hack. You can create a paper wallet, with extreme precautions to reduce the chances of hacking such as going off line and using a live OS in a fresh USB drive, print with an offline, wired printer.

What most experts agree on being the best way to store Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is using a Hardware wallet. These are devices similar to a USB drive, with its own screen an pin number which even in a computer infected with malware (like may are these days)  it would be save to use.

I recommend these two, which are considered the best, the Ledger Nano S and Trezor.

Using it is easy enough following a few simple steps. Make sure you keep the recovery code VERY well protected (you write this down in paper), a couple copies in different safes. This would allow you to recover your money if the device is stolen, lost or destroyed.

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

 

 

More questions about Bitcoin

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Message:

Hello, Fernando. I was wondering more & more about Bitcoin, but I can’t find too much clear information about it- everything starts in the middle & doesn’t seem too concerned about telling you how not to get snagged-up with it (ex: looking like a drug dealer or a money launderer). Would you people tell me some more about it? I would hate to miss a good investment, but I don’t even get how it IS an investment- it doesn’t seem like there’s any company that distributes it, so how can there be any stock? And why not just make your own?

A-

Hello A,

Again, I’m no Bitcoin expert by any stretch of the imagination but I’ll try to answer some of your questions.

Bitcoin is a currency, a virtual one at that but some Bitcoin does not make you a drug dealer any more than having a roll of 20s in your pocket makes you one. Don’t let the mainstream media agenda intended to stigmatize Bitcoin get to you. In any case, ALL large financial groups are into Bitcoin at this point, so don’t feel bad about doing it yourself.

Second, it is not an investment. Investments generate profit. Buying Bitcoin will only get you… Bitcoin. Like gold, it can go up or down and you selling at the right time may leave you with a profit but it’s a currency, not an investment.

Finally, you CAN make your own. You can mine Bitcoin with your computer. The problem is that by its own nature Bitcoin is HARD to mine, meaning you need a lot of computer power to mine it so that its profitable and compensates the electric power you are using to generate it. People used to buy mining computers to mine Bitcoin and many still do. How profitable it is today is hard to say. All I know is that you need some initial investment for the mining computers and electric power better be rather affordable where you are.

As I said before, I think Bitcoin is extremely interesting but it’s not on the same line as gold and silver, which have been around for thousands of years. Can it be the gold of the future generation? Maybe, but don’t put into it anything you can’t afford to lose. That would be my advice.

As for buying Bitcoins, I suggest you do a lot of google and reading first. Chances are you’ll end up in Coinbase or maybe Localbitcoins. No, I don’t have any association of any kind with either one, they are just some of the most common names that pop up.

Good luck!

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Gold, Silver See Solid Rallies On Safe-Haven Demand, Rising Oil

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Gold, Silver See Solid Rallies On Safe-Haven Demand, Rising Oil The currency of our world is changing just like everything else. Being so wrapped up in life it’s hard for us to understand these changes as they happen. Bitcoin jumped to $7000 over the weekend. This is a monumental and, somewhat, terrifying rise in price. …

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Introduction to Owning Silver & Gold – Post 4 What is YOUR STYLE?

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Introduction to Owning Silver & Gold – Post 4 What is YOUR STYLE? From one of the best precious metal dealers in the nation comes an article that is very important for all who are considering precious metals in their life. This article looks at the buying of precious metals from a collectors standpoint. You …

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Gold & Silver Update (2017-8-20)

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Americans have been living under the illusion consumption produces jobs. And the financial sector has been artificially inflated. Dr. Jim Willie reveals the United States is seeing the climax of collapse of the financial sector and consumer economy. Also in this interview, Willie reveals the Chinese are working on a major deal to pay for crude oil in Yuan. Other countries are moving away from the Dollar. He predicts the Dollar won’t collapse. Instead, it will rise, then simply vanish.   Sponsored in part by SDBullion.com

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Gold & Silver Update (2017-8-13)

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In support of sound money, the following gold and silver update is sponsored by SD Bullion and Silver Doctors. The Silver Price has put in a higher-high, smashed through the 50-day moving average, and is now testing the 200-day. We said on Monday the white metal would either break-out or break-down, and it sure did break-out. We are above $17, and it looks like we can put our bullish wedge behind us as early as today depending on how silver performs: Volatility is the talk of the markets this week, especially after that 44% move yesterday, however, as we mentioned

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Is Bitcoin the new gold?

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I’ve always avoided giving financial advice. Not my job and just too much responsibility.

When it comes to such a thing, I just stick to what I know well which is economic collapse. It’s what I went through and it’s what I’ve researched over the years.

When it comes to an economic collapse there are a few basic points to keep in mind.

When everything is going to hell, you can count on banks screwing you to save themselves. Closed doors and a “Me speako no English” sign on it… in New York City. Frozen accounts, conversion to new currencies worth a fraction of what the original one was worth.

Precious metals provide a hedge against hyperinflation or full economic collapse. They are an established commodity over thousands of years, accepted as something that holds intrinsic value. IT doesn’t matter if it’s just a chunk of metal. In our minds, and now for thousands of years, “its worth its weight in gold”. And oil is worth its weight in oil, so are cereals, beans and so on.

And then there’s bitcoin. A complex cryptocurrency which most people don’t even fully understand what it is. The only way to understand more is to spend several hours, maybe several days reading up. What’s important to understand is that Bitcoin is a commodity. The best way to describe it would be the digital gold of the internet era.

No, its not gold, nor is it silver. The piece silver in my pocket, a 1964 Kennedy half dollar, is material, tangible, but that doesn’t mean Bitcoin isn’t valuable as well. What it lacks in tangible peace of mind it has in liquidity. Its easy to move around, access and sell all over the world. Its not controlled by anyone, no government. For Bitcoin you’ll need a Bitcoin wallet. Which one?  I’m not affiliated in any way to any of them and cant recommend a specific one. Just look online and go for the one with the best reputation.

When asked for financial advice I’ve always kept a pretty conservative position. Diversify, some cash is important, very important actually. Some money in the bank, some money in a bank in a different country, some precious metals, investing in reliable stocks, investing in good real estate. And yes, putting some money in Bitcoin.

Bitcoin has been going up non stop this year. Will it stop and drop? Probably. Will it go up even more in the long run, maybe a LOT more? I think that’s very likely. While its digital nature means there’s always the risk of hacking or other tech related problems, its ability to be moved around, the market for it, easily converted to different currencies and increased acceptance are advantages worth noticing.

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Everything You Need to Know About Buying, Owning & Storing Gold & Silver

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Everything You Need to Know About Buying, Owning & Storing Gold & Silver Owning gold and silver can be a little frustrating at times. Especially if you don’t quiet understand the fluctuations in the market. Sometimes the value goes up and sometimes it goes down. Then, sometimes it goes down a lot. That’s when people …

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Coolio ‘preparing to live off the grid’

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Coolio at the Great GoogaMooga Festival

Where do old rappers go to die?

American Rapper Coolio has told a newspaper he is preparing for a social collapse and plans to end his days off grid.  “I’ve acquired knowledge of people and the world — knowledge that will help me survive in any given situation” he told the SundayTimes. ” I can track stuff. I can fix a car. I can build a house. I could build a wind turbine if I wanted to.

“I’m preparing to live off the grid, without electricity, air conditioning and heat. You could say it’s preparation for an apocalypse or a natural disaster. The poles are shifting and I’m not optimistic about the future,” he said.

Coolio,  best known for his hit single Gangsta’s Paradise, would like to get rid of the entire tax system — and believes tax is illegal under the US constitution.  “If I was in charge, I’d get rid of tax completely. I’d get rid of money too. I’d go back to the barter system. In my opinion, and according to the constitution of my country, tax is illegal.”

The Grammy award-winner, who says he is not on good terms with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), believes investing in people, gold and diamonds is the best way to save for his retirement. He admits, though, that he has an expensive shoe habit and buys a pair “at least once a week” — sometimes for as much as $1,000 [£785].

He does not personally own any property – “Property can be taken away from you by “eminent domain” [the right of the government to seize your property]. That can happen to anyone in America. I’m going to put all my money in people, gold and diamonds.

 “As for gold and diamonds, that’s something you are always going to be able to use to get food and water. I’m thinking ahead to the time when a bottle of water is going to cost $10. Hopefully, I won’t live that long, but I think that time will come.

Back when he was starting, said Coolio “to make ends meet, I hustled. I sold things: drugs, shoes, jewellery, whatever I could get my hands on. The name of my first album was It Takes a Thief, you know? I’ve been around the block a few times. It made me determined — determined to not live like that for the rest of my life. I got mad at myself. I told myself: “You should be doing better. You’re smart enough — you should be Steve Jobs [the founder of Apple] or someone like that. Get off your ass and go get some money.

“I had to sleep in my car. Sometimes I didn’t have enough money to pay the rent and would get thrown out of where I was living. Other times, I went hungry. I was fortunate in that I had good friends around me who would spot me a $20 bill if I asked them to.

“My mother, Jackie Mae, was a gangster. She took money with her pistol and her knife. She was never a hooker but when it came to money, she believed: “[Get it] by any means necessary.”

“But we were all born dying anyway. I’m not scared to die. I’ve had a fulfilling life. When my time comes, I’m going to leave with a smile on my face . . . or a grimace at the bullet that killed me.

“I support the Jarez Music Foundation. Jarez is a young musician in Vegas, and he has a music foundation which is trying to put musical instruments back in schools. I’ll work and perform for his foundation for free, and I mentor some of the kids.”

Born Artis Leon Ivey Jr, Coolio’s big hit was released in 1995 and featured on the soundtrack of the film Dangerous Minds, starring Michelle Pfeiffer. It became one of the most successful rap songs of all time, reaching No 1 in the charts in the UK, America and 14 other countries. He has released eight studio albums.

This autumn Coolio joins the I Love the 90s tour, playing dates in the UK between September 29 and October 7 alongside other acts who had big hits in that decade, such as Vanilla Ice and Salt-N-Pepa.

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When the Economy Collapses, What is “Money”?

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It seems like every year there is talk of an imminent economic collapse. 2017 is no different. With the economic deck stacked against Trump, I don’t have much confidence that he, alone, can turn things around. After all, the national debt is completely out of control and has doubled in the past 8 years. Sooner or later, the piper must be paid and preppers who breathed a sigh of relief when Trump was elected, may want to think again, as I wrote about in this article.

So, with continued predictions of economic collapse, I asked Mac Slavo over at SHTFplan blog to share with my readers his insights into how a family might survive following a collapse of our money system.  Here is his answer, in his own words:

Economist Mike Shedlock defines money through the eyes of Austrian economist Murray N. Rothbard as, “a commodity used as a medium of exchange.”

“Like all commodities, it has an existing stock, it faces demands by people to buy and hold it. Like all commodities, its “price” in terms of other goods is determined by the interaction of its total supply, or stock, and the total demand by people to buy and hold it. People “buy” money by selling their goods and services for it, just as they “sell” money when they buy goods and services.”

What is money when the system collapses and the SHTF?

In disaster situations, the value of money as we know it now, changes, especially if we are dealing with a hyperinflationary collapse of the system’s core currency. This article discusses money as a commodity in an event where the traditional currency (US Dollar) is no longer valuable.

In a collapse of the system, there will be multiple phases, with the first phase being the “crunch”, as discussed in James Rawles’ book Patriots. The crunch is the period of time directly preceding a collapse and the collapse itself. Too often, preppers prep for “the crunch” and fail to realize they will have to be ready to survive for many months, if not years afterwards.

Traditional Currency

Initially, the traditional currency system will maintain some value, though it may be rapidly depreciating in buying power. For those with physical, non-precious metal denominated currency on hand (paper dollars, non-silver coins), spending it as rapidly as possible is the best approach. In Argentina during that country’s many economic collapses, if someone received a check in payment, the immediately rushed to cash it, knowing that it was losing its value minute by minute. This short Kindle document, written by a survivor of that time in Argentina’s history, details that event.

It is during the crunch that ATM machines around the country will run out of currency as people aware of the rapidly devaluing dollar will be attempting to withdraw as much money as possible. This immediate increase in money supply, coupled with the population’s general knowledge of the currency depreciation in progress, will lead to instant price increases for goods, especially essential goods.

And, forget the classic “run on banks” that have been depicted in old movies, including “It’s a Wonderful Life.” A modern day “run” simply won’t happen. Rather, the electronic system that moves money from a billion different points to another billion points will simply be turned off. In a split second, all access to funds will cease, and there will be no point running to a bank to get cash, since banks will be in lockdown mode and, in any case, they hold very little actual cash.

If your physical cash has not been converted into tangible assets, this would be the time to do so. Acquiring as much food, fuel, clothing and toiletry items as possible would be the ideal way to spend remaining cash before it completely collapses to zero, as it did in the Weimar inflation in 1930’s Germany or Zimbabwe’s hyperinflation in recent years. This family survival and prepping manual has in depth advice for preppers at all stages.

Precious Metals

During the initial phase of the ‘crunch’, precious metals will be a primary bartering tool, but this may not last long. The old survivalist adage, “You can’t eat your gold,” will become apparent very quickly. In a total breakdown of the system, food, water and fuel will be the most important tangible goods to acquire, and for beginners, this list of where to start with food storage is invaluable.

Consider someone who has a two-week or one-month supply of food on hand. Do you believe they would be willing to part with that food for some precious metals? The likely answer is no. There will be almost no bartering item that one would be willing to trade their food for once it is realized that food supply lines have been cut. At that point, it’s anyone’s guess as to when supplies, food and otherwise, will be replenished.

That being said, since most will not barter their food, not even for fuel, the next recognized medium of exchange by merchants, especially those selling fuel, will be precious metals. For the initial crunch, silver coins, especially recognizable coins like 90% silver quarters, dimes and half dollars, along with one ounce government mint issued silver coins, like US Silver Eagles, will be accepted by some, probably most, merchants. For those trying to flee cities to bug-out locations, silver coins of the aforementioned denominations may be a life saver, as they can be used to acquire fuel. While it’s recommended to have gold as well, the issue with gold is that its value is so much higher than that of silver. Breaking a one-ounce gold coin into ten pieces just to buy a tank of gas will not be practical. It is for this reason that having silver on hand is highly recommended. Packing at least $25 – $50 worth of silver coins in each bug-out bag would be a prudent prepping idea.

In a total SHTF scenario, silver and gold may eventually break down as a bartering unit, as contact with the, “outside” world breaks down. One reason for this, is that the fair value price of precious metals will be hard to determine, as it will be difficult to locate buyers for this commodity. As well, the vast majority of people will not have precious metals of any kind for barter, so other forms of currency will begin to appear.

This, however, does not mean that you should spend all of your precious metals right at the onset of a collapse. Precious metals will have value after bartering and trade is reestablished and once the system begins to stabilize. Once stabilization begins, the likely scenario is that precious metals will be one of the most valuable monetary units available, so having plenty may be quite a benefit. At this point, they could be used to purchase property, livestock, services, and labor.

Water as currency

Water is often overlooked as a medium of exchange, though it is one of the most essential commodities for survival on the planet.

For those bugging out of cities, it will be impractical to carry with them more than 5 – 10 gallons of water because of space limitations in their vehicles. Due to the weight of water, 8 lbs. per gallon, it’s very difficult to carry much if getting out on foot. Thus, having a method to procure water may not only save your life but also provide you with additional goods for which you can barter

An easy solution for providing yourself and others with clean water is to acquire a portable water filtration unit for your bug-out bag(s). While they are a bit costly, with a good unit such as the Katadyn Combi water filter running around $170, the water produced will be worth its weight in gold, almost literally. This particular filter produces 13,000 gallons of clean water! It’s a must-have for any survival kit.

Because we like reserves for our reserves, we’d also recommend acquiring water treatment tablets like the EPA approved Katadyn Micropur tabs. If your filter is lost or breaks for whatever reason, each tablet can filter 1 liter of water. In our opinion, it’s the best chemical water treatment available.

Clean water is money. In a bartering environment, especially before individuals have had time to establish water sources, this will be an extremely valuable medium of exchange and will have more buying power than even silver or gold on the individual bartering level.

Food as currency when SHTF

In a system collapse, food will be another of the core essential items that individuals will want to acquire. Survival Blog founder James Rawles suggests storing food for 1) personal use, 2) charity, and 3) bartering.

Dry goods, canned goods, and freeze dried foods can be used for bartering, but only if you have enought to feed yourself, family and friends. They should be bartered by expiration date, with those foods with the expiration dates farthest out being the last to be traded. You don’t know how long the crunch and recovery periods will last, so hold the foods with the longest expiration dates in your posession if you get to a point where you must trade.

Baby formula will also be a highly valued item in a SHTF scenario, so whether you have young children or not, it may not be a bad idea to stockpile a one or two weeks supply. (For parents of young children, this should be the absolute first thing you should be stockpiling!). In addition to water, baby formula may be one of the most precious of all monetary commodities.

Another tradeable food good would be non-hybrid produce seeds, but the need for these may not be apparent to most at the initial onset of a collapse, though having extra seeds in your bug-out location may come in handy later. If you currently have a productive garden, check out these instructions for creating your own mini seed banks for barter or sale.

Fuel as currency in a post-SHTF world

Fuel, including gas, diesel, propane and kerosene will all become barterable goods in a collapse, with gas being the primary of these energy monetary units during the crunch as individuals flee cities. For most, stockpiling large quantities will be impractical, so for those individuals who prepared, they may only have 20 – 50 gallons in their possession as they are leaving their homes. If you are near your final bug-out destination, and you must acquire food, water or firearms, fuel may be a good medium of exchange, especially for those that have extra food stuffs they are willing to trade.

Though we do not recommend expending your fuel, if you are left with no choice, then food, water and clothing may take precedence.

For those with the ability to do so, store fuel in underground tanks on your property for later use and trading, and this article provides vital instructions for storing fuel safely — a major consideration.

Firearms and Ammunition

Though firearms and ammunition may not be something you want to give up, those without them will be willing to trade some of their food, precious metals, fuel and water for personal security. If the system collapses, there will likely be pandemonium, and those without a way to protect themselves will be sitting ducks to thieves, predators, and gangs.

Even if you choose not to trade your firearms and ammo during the onset of a collapse, these items will be valuable later. As food supplies diminish, those without firearms will want to acquire them so they can hunt for food. Those with firearms may very well be running low on ammunition and will be willing to trade for any of the aforementioned items.

In James Rawles’ Patriots and William Forstchen’s One Second After, ammunition was the primary trading good during the recovery and stabilization periods, where it was traded for food, clothing, shoes, livestock, precious metals, and fuel.

Clothing and Footwear

We may take it for granted now because of the seemingly endless supply, but clothing and footwear items will be critical in both, the crunch and the phases after it. Having an extra pair of boots, a jacket, socks, underwear and sweaters can be an excellent way to acquire other essential items in a trade.

As children grow out of their clothes, rather than throwing them away, they will become barterable goods, and one possible way to earn an income during this time could be running a second hand clothing store.

It is recommended that those with children stock up on essential clothing items like socks, underwear and winter-wear that is sized a year or two ahead of your child’s age.

Additional Monetary Commodities

The above monetary units are essential goods that will be helpful for bartering in the initial phases of a collapse in the system. As the crunch wanes and recovery and stabilization begin to take over, other commodities will become tradeable goods.

Another important monetary commodity after the crunch will be trade skills. If you know how to fish, machine tools, hunt, sew, fix and operate radioes, fix cars, manufacture shoes, or grow food, you’ll have some very important skills during the recovery period. It costs very little, if anything, to acquire skills and survival knowledge, and, in the worst of times, those are things that cannot be taken from you.

Guest post by Mac Slavo from SHTFplan, updated by Noah, 1/2/17.

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Cash? Gold? Silver? Bitcoins?

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Cash? Gold? Silver? Bitcoins? Everything we do in life involves money, being in the preparedness community, the question now is what kind of money. That probably makes no sense but im sorry to say my friends… the world is changing whether we like it or not. You have to adapt in order to survive and …

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Gold, Silver and Diversifying Income

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Gold, Silver and Diversifying Income James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio in player below! There was a time when your faithful host was just a scared newbie lost in a sea of articles about the impending economic collapse and the death of the US dollar. I knew my history so the idea of wheelbarrows of … Continue reading Gold, Silver and Diversifying Income

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List of Prices during the Aztec Empire

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I was discussing in a forum recently about the value of precious metals during precolonial times.

As you probably know, Aztecs used cocoa beans as currency. By today’s definition of currency, it wasn’t so much an actual currency as it was a valued consumable good. Still, it is true that it was used to trade for goods and services. The list of prices in cocoa beans makes it clear that even then, gold was still pretty valuable and expensive within its economy, with half a kilo of gold only being beaten by selling ones own children.

A 1545 list of commodity prices in Tlaxcala gives an idea of the purchasing value of cacao:

1 good turkey hen=100 cacao beans

1 turkey egg=3 cacao beans

1 fully ripe avocado=1 cacao bean

large strip of pine bark for kindling = 5 cacao beans

1 large tomato=1 cacao bean

pumpkin = 4 beans

5 long narrow green chiles = 1 cacao bean

small rabbit = 30 cacao beans

0.62kg gold statue = 250 beans

ones own child sells for about 600 cacao beans.

“ordinary” person’s yearly standard of living=4800 cacao beans

Quachtli (large white cotton cloaks)=60-240 cacao beans depending on quality/size.

Quachtli (cotton cloaks) where used as currency as well, used to pay for more expensive items along with copper axe-blades, or quills full of gold dust while cocoa beans were ‘the every day small change’.

1 x dugout canoe = 1 x quachtli

100 sheets of paper = 1 x quachtli

1 x gold lip plug = 25 x quachtli

1 x warrior’s costume and shield = about 64 x quachtli

1 x feather cloak = 100 x quachtli

1 x string of jade beads = 600 x quachtli

Cocoa beans where even counterfeited, like todays currency, making fake cocoa beans with wax, dirt and other beans.

Sources:

http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread574535/pg1

http://www.mexicolore.co.uk/maya/chocolate/beanz-meanz-money

There’s just no way around it. If anyone wants to own gold and silver, you either pay dearly for it or go find it, mine it and smelt it. All of this requires considerable labour, thus the status of scarce and precious.

2016 American Silver Eagle (1 oz) Five Coins Brilliant Uncirculated

2016 American Silver Eagle (1 oz) Five Coins Brilliant Uncirculated
If you’re just getting started gold and silver should be the least of your concerns. The basic gear and supplies mentioned here often. A Glock, a good rifle, emergency supplies and a respectable stockpile of food and water should be your main concern. In terms of wealth a stash of cash comes before precious metals too. But once that’s covered, if you want insurance against inflation or you just want a proven form a wealth storage, PM is worth considering.

Take care folks,

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Surviving Your Dentist and Bitcoin

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Hello
1 I am a retired lawyer – for 30 years I defended dentists in malpractice suits. I can tell you with some authority…you are exactly correct!!
Many years ago I started going to see other dentists every time one told me I had a cavity. I’d go to another dentist, never mention I’d already been to see one, & the 2nd one would never mention a cavity.
I also learned to never say I was having tooth pain (they are taught to ask). Just say “no problems” & see if they can find it.
Obviously, there are exceptions, but…
2 As for why we have such an inefficient medical system, Milton Friedman accurately described it back in the 1970’s. The problem is too much money. Government programs pump billions in to medical schools & they have to spend it. This is why we have studies on pregnant pigs, studies on insects, conflicting studies on the most minute aspect of everything. They have to spend that money. Way too much supply for the demand. So medical folks create more demand!
3 I’m enjoying your book on the Argentina Collapse. Very good! Thanks for writing it.
Do you have an opinion on Bitcoin in preparation for an economic collapse? I don’t see it on your site..
Thanks!
Jack

.
Thanks Jack for sharing your experience. I’m glad you’re enjoying my book too.
I agree about this being a money problem (seems its always the issue). They just have to milk money out of the sheep any way they can.
About bitcoin. I may have talked about it before but I’m no expert. Some of the most evil people in the planet seem to hate bitcoin so that makes me like it already. It may be a huge thing in the future, and today it does have a place for sure. It’s hard to understand what digital money actually is. I know it took me enough time, but once you understand why it’s “mined” and why that is important you understand it a bit better. I think its another tool in the tool box. I think of it as a digital version of gold, with some advantages over it and obviously some disadvantages, the greatest one clearly being the lack of time proven acceptance over thousands of years like precious metals. In a diversified portfolio I think it does have a place and I understand why people are excited about it although I try to be cautious.
Regards,
FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

My thoughts on Dave Ramsey

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Ferfal,

Good Afternoon what are your thoughts on Dave Ramsey’s plan for

getting out of debt as a preparation for Economic problems? Are you

familiar with it? I’ve never heard you mention him, albeit you

certainly talk about having cash saved up. I think if everyone had

their debt paid off the extra income would certainly help absorb some

inflation. Give options anyway.

-A

.

I very much like Dave Ramsey and recommend his book “The Total Money Makeover”. I like how he recommends staying out of debt, having a tight budget and living below your means. His advice regarding not buying new cars or taking leases is spot on. Buy your car cash. If you can’t, you certainly shouldn’t go into debt for it.

The only point I don’t agree with him is gold.

Dave calls gold a “lousy” investment and mentions the poor returns compared to other investments. That much is true, gold is a lousy investment but that’s because gold isn’t an investment at all. Gold is a commodity. Investments generate money for you, think interests or a property you put up for rent. Buying and selling gold won’t make you much money. You’re more likely to lose some given premiums and shipping. But for an economic collapse? Oh yes, that’s different. When something terrible happens and the dollar, Euro or whatever fiat currency starts devaluating at double digit rate per week, gold will hold its own and then some. In reality it’s just keeping its true value, plus the higher than normal premium due to market interest as an economic shelter.

At one point Dave says that a pair of blue jeans or a tank of gas are “very valuable”, but not gold coins and that canned soup “would have been a better hedged against a failed economy”. As someone that actually went through an economic collapse and has studied failed economies elsewhere around the world for years, I can tell you this just isn’t true. I’ve haggled and bought two pairs of very nice jeans at a black market in Buenos Aires for a fraction of the cost of a similar quality pair in USA or Europe. After the collapse, the business of buying and selling gold went up 500% in Argentina. Gold became so valuable it became a premium target for pickpockets and burglars, so much that its still just impossible to go around town with any visible gold jewellery.

Gold is not an investment. It is a commodity considered valuable throughout history, which goes up and down in price but overall remains a globally recognized form of wealth.

Besides, as someone that dealt with an economic collapse first hand I can assure you is that you can’t grab any other asset or investment, throw it in your pocket and make a run for the airport while the country falls apart around you.

Then again, this is why you take advice regarding economic collapse from me rather than Dave Ramsey! 😉

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

BREAKING: Billionaire Investor Abandons Stocks For Gold; Says Market Is Collapsing

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Billionaire Investor Abandons Stocks For Gold; Says Market Is Collapsing

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A legendary billionaire investor apparently believes the stock market is about to collapse, and he’s moving his money into gold instead.

George Soros has dumped 37 percent of his US stocks and made huge investments in gold, according to Bloomberg, which reported that Soros bought 1.05 million shares in the SPDR Gold trust (an exchange fund that tracks bullion prices) and $264 million worth of Barrick Gold Corp (NYSE: ABX), the world’s largest gold-mining company.

“A hard landing is practically unavoidable,” Soros said of the current state of the market in an interview with Bloomberg Television. “I’m not expecting it; I’m observing it.”

Raul Moreno, CEO and co-founder of iBillionaire, told CNN this week, “It’s been a while since he’s been this bearish. Soros has made money in markets going up or down, so people definitely trust what he’s saying.”

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Soros also doubled his bet that the S&P will lose value.

What Soros Knows

Soros built a $24 billion fortune predicting what the market is going to do next. In 1989, Soros predicted Japanese stocks would collapse, and they did. He also made a very successful bet that the Bank of England (the UK’s equivalent to the Federal Reserve) would devalue the pound in 1992. It did, and Soros made $1 billion on the deal.

Soros has been, for some time, warning of another financial meltdown like that of 2008. He has said the European debt crisis is worse than the crisis of 2008, which began when the US mortgage market collapsed.

sorosNor is it just Europe Soros is worried about. He also has predicted that the Chinese currency – the Yuan – is about to collapse. That would bring down the Chinese economy and potentially cause a collapse of stock prices in the United States. Many American companies are heavily dependent on sales to China.

One of Soros’ biggest fears is deflation, or a collapse in prices and corporate profits. A similar scenario was one of the worst effects of the Great Depression.

Soros based his Chinese prediction on the fact that prices for finished goods in China have been falling for 46 straight months, Bloomberg reported.

Not Just Soros

Soros’ former employee, money manager Stanley Druckenmiller, has been urging investors to buy gold because of the huge amount of debt in China, CNN reported. Druckenmiller compared the state of Chinese banking to subprime mortgages in the US in 2007-2008, and predicted it will soon collapse.

The Federal Reserve will not be able to get the economy out of the current situation, Druckenmiller warned investors.

“The Fed has no end game,” he said. “The Fed’s objective seems to be making sure the S&P goes another six months without a 20 percent decline.”

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Druckenmiller is also worried about what he calls reckless behavior of American CEOs who have been wasting money on stock buybacks and mergers.

Bond investor Jeff Gundlach of DoubleLine Capital also thinks that the Fed could make the economy worse with incredibly low or negative interest rates, CNN reported.

Negative rates are really bad,” Gundlach said. “It’s going to backfire like an old Model-T.”

Gundlach says gold could hit a price of $1,400 a troy ounce this year because of economic turbulence. Gold was trading at $1,271.38 an ounce on May 18, according to goldprice.com.

What is your reaction? Do you believe the stock market is going to collapse? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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Gold, Rolex and Cash after SHTF

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File:Gold Bars.jpg

Hi

I read the portion of your site devoted to the Rolex watch and the supposed value of the watch.

For the last so many decades I have been dealing in vintage watches.

Couple of points. It’s a ladies watch and ladies watches are much less in demand on the resale market than men’s watches are.

Also, there is no set price for vintage watches. It’s kind of what you can get. It’s not the stock market where the prices are posted for anyone to see.

Also, Rolex are a mass produced watch. Replicas are very good and not many people can spot the difference unless they have some experience in the field.

Best thing to have for emergency is gold. Bullion gold. Such as Maple Leaf coins or some other 999+ gold coin. Also, one should buy bullion gold coins in a minimum of 1/4 ounce size. Smaller than that there is a premium that the buyer never never gets back when they sell to a dealer.

Gold, as you well know is a publicly traded commodity with published, both print and on the net, prices for buying and selling.

Preppers are a funny bunch. Lot of silly ideas and full of conspiracies and fantasies about how they will cope/live in a difficult environment that they foresee coming our way.

They may be right about the future but I suspect few of them are prepared.

Btw, I have purchased your book and read it at least twice.

Be smart and lucky amigo.

All the best.

-James

.

Thanks James, you bring up some excellent points.

As I said before it all comes down to how much you’re paying for it. There’s always a price. A buying price. A selling price (which usually offends those on the other side of the counter when they are the ones doing the selling) and there’s a price just too good to walk away from.

I would be very cautious about buying anything I don’t know well, for example in my case watches. I have a pretty good idea of what guns cost. I know a Colt Single Action Army has a certain value that no gunstore will refuse to pay for given the possible resale value, so I have a pretty good idea of what the “too good” price is. As you say though, it is better if you have a fixed, unbiased price for the specific item so that’s why gold and silver are so appealing. There’s no debate regarding their given price each day. Then again, there’s even less of a debate when it comes to a wad of cash. A couple thousand dollars in 100 USd bills is still pretty compact, and you don’t need to sell it fist to use it as you would with gold or silver. This is why the first savings you put aside for a rainy day, those should be hard cash.

“But cash is useless during an economic collapse”. No, no its not. Especially during the first few days and weeks, it may lose its value but it does so slowly. At the same time the shortage of cash, in spite of the economic collapse, creates an environment where cash is king. During this first period of time, cash gives you leverage even if it loses value. In the case of a strong currency like the USD, its even less likely that it will become worthless or lose significant value overnight.

Then yes, if you want to put aside something “economic collapse proof”, that’s when you go into precious metals.

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Survival… Rolex?

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Hi Fernando,

Whats your experience with rolex watch?  Will it hold value in SHTF?  Decrease, increase?
If I remember correctly, you mention in your first book, but I am traveling and do not have it with me to look up what you said about it.
I have some savings which I am using to purchase precious metal coins. However, in one of the shops, I came across a (genuine) 18k gold ladies oyster perpetual president made in the early 80’s for US $3,800 and it got me to thinking.
1) It is my understanding is that I could walk into any major city in the world and be able to convert it easily into cash.
 
In your experience, would that be accurate?
I am always on the go—traveling somewhere—both around the US and international.  I like the concept of a rolex because its subtle.  It is seen as a personal item and would never get counted towards the $10K cash limit.
Since it is an older model, if anyone ever asks about it, I will say it belonged to my grandmother and was passed down to me.
We have problems now in the US with police officers confiscating (stealing) your cash and monetary instruments claiming its suspicious for “drugs” even if you have committed no crime and have never touched a single drug in your life.
As opposed to bullion, it is highly unlikely that a rolex worn on your wrist would ever be confiscated by police or customs.
Other questions/concerns:
2) The scrap value of the gold in the watch is only about US $1200 compared to its asking price of $3,800.  In terms of holding its value, is it better to stick to bullion coins? Or would it be reasonable to expect that a genuine gold Rolex would hold/increase its value in bad times?  
3)  I am a single female and usually solo.  How much danger am I putting myself in by having and wearing a gold rolex? 
I am automatically on “yellow” alert whenever in public, and practice situational awareness at a level much higher than most.
For the time being, I’m sticking to “1st world” countries, although who knows? That could change.
I have done a lot of internet research about this model of watch and the price. Retail price for the same or similar watch in the US right now is between $7,000-$12,000.  This caused me to be suspicious of the seller, so I went back and examined the watch closely with gem magnifier, and it is definitely authentic.
I asked the shop owner why this piece is priced so low.  He said that most of the merchandise are things he purchased and re-sells.  But that this particular piece he is doing on consignment for a friend and she needs the $$.
He confirmed everything I had researched online about how, in the USA, this watch would sell for $7,000 +;
He said that here in Canada (quebec), there just aren’t many buyers for rolex because Canadians don’t have money like Americans do.  And that most of his rolex customers are actually Americans who come over the border to make purchases.
Thank you so much for everything you do!  Love your stuff, and Im just bummed that I didnt bring your book with me!
Angela

Hello Angela,

In most countries that I’ve been to form USA to Argentina and here in Europe, the advertising seems to be the same: “We buy your gold, silver, diamonds and Rolex”.

You have to keep it mind though that the selling price is nothing like the buying price. In general you are lucky to get half of what a potential customer is willing to pay once the dealer flips the watch. Now if you can get it yourself for such a low price then you could probably sell it elsewhere without losing money or maybe even making some on top.

In general yes, Rolex do hold their value pretty well, same as quality jewellery. The trick is knowing your trade, knowing how to avoid counterfeit items, and of course avoiding the ridiculously low offers you come across sometimes and sticking to serious people.

I was talking with a jeweller today and he was showing me how to grade diamonds, which imperfections are acceptable and which are not. Its all very interesting stuff. Again, the selling price is often not as good as the buying one so you do lose some, but Rolex watches hold on nicely. The nice thing about bullion is that market price is fixed so there’s less room for excuses. Try talking with the shop owner. Ask him, honestly, how much would be pay for a similar item if he was buying so as to get a reasonable profit margin himself. That will give you somewhat of an idea of how much you can get for it.

So, answering your questions.

1)Yes, in most city centers around the world you will be able to sell your Rolex for good money. Some dealers may haggle worse than others but you will walk out with a wad of cash. The trick is buying a quality item, paying as little for it as possible and then asking around to get a good deal when it’s time to sell.

2)For protecting money, I think precious metals is the way to go because as I said before, it has a given market price and there isn’t much to debate about. Pure gold is just that. Watches, antiques and even numismatic coins have a certain value as well and they may well be good investments and ways of moving around a lot of cash. I doubt the average TSA agent knows what a Mercury Dime 1916 D is, but the thing is worth $135,000 in  MS67 condition. Having said that, its not as reliable in terms of knowing the specific price as checking the daily given value of gold and silver. The same coin can be worth $100, or $100.000 depending on its grade, and the difference between Fine condition or Very Fine condition can be hard to tell. Even experts may have a difference of opinion. This kind of problem doesn’t exist with precious metals.

3)I would say the risk is pretty high. In a place like Argentina its downright suicidal. I’m not exactly a “soft target”, yet for some time I stopped wearing my gold wedding ring, replaced it for a silver one like lots of other people did back in the day. Now in first world countries this may not be that much of a problem. In most European capitals and large cities you see women with very expensive jewellery. Still, I would say a gold Rolex is pretty noticeable and pretty tempting. In moderate to high crime areas I would keep it out of sight. If you just want to keep it with you then it would just be a matter of being careful and when you know you are in more troubled areas just put it in your purse.

Stay safe!

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Prep Blog Review: Prepping For The Collapse

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prep blog review

If many of the disaster we are prepping for are left to hazard, the economic collapse is not. In fact we already feel its effects on our day to day life and no matter how much we try to kid ourselves that maybe it won’t happen we know that it already did!

So instead of waiting for things to get worse in order to be convinced, here are 5 articles that we stumbled upon and discuss how close we are of an actual collapse and what you can do to stay on top of things.

1. The 5 Places In America You DON’T Want To Be When Society Collapses

Prep 1“What would you say is the number one threat to lead to an end-of-the-world-like scenario? A terrorist attack? An EMP strike? A natural disaster? An economic collapse?

All of these are possibilities, but in each one, a thick population density will make it far worse. There’s no denying that people panic when a crisis occurs, and that panic is only multiplied when more people are living closely to one another.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

2. On a scale of 1 to 10, how close are we to SHTF?

Prep 2“Hello my friend and welcome back! I get several emails a month asking me my opinion on SHTF and this very thing (“On a scale of 1 to10, how close are we to SHTF?”) Today we are going to look at what I think and why.  Grab a cup of coffee and have a seat while we visit.

While I know that many people have varying opinions on this, I think that it is important that we take a look and just how close we are and why I think that we are closer than many people realize.”

Read more on American Preppers Online.

3. Decentralizing Cash – The Ultimate Survivalist Preparation

Prep 3“If the catastrophic event you’ve been preparing for does one day come about, it will be a fearsome test of your survivalism. Like any test, some will not pass. But in this case the consequences for valued loved ones might be heart-rending.

Preparation may be the answer, but whether it’s civil war, war with a foreign power, economic collapse, or social unrest, centralized money will have in one way or another been the root cause. Because whatever the event that tears apart the fabric of this country, the policies fueled by our fractional-reserve banking system-inflated fiat currency, and its petrodollar role, will certainly have taken us there.”

Read more on The Prepper Journal.

4. How To Profit From Collecting & Selling Scrap Gold

Prep 4“I’ve been collecting scrap metal for as long as I can remember. As a kid, my siblings and I would pick scrap metal from trash left out on garbage days. We would find copper wire, junk auto parts, pop cans – basically anything our dad could take us to sell at the scrap yard. It was labor intensive work for kids, but we were a lower middle income family that liked making something out of nothing.

But, one day while I was walking home from school, I found a ring and took it home to show my dad. He thought it was gold and took it to get checked out. It turned out to be 14K gold and I got $20.00, a fortune for a kid in the 60’s! Even back then, I realized that was a lot of money for something so small, and I’d rather find something like that than look for aluminum or stainless steel.”

Read more on The Survival Mom.

5. Frugal Out of Necessity, Frugal Out of Choice

Prep 5“When I was in college, I was frugal out of necessity. I had very little income coming in – just the money from a part-time job – so every dime that I spent was vital.

I ate a ton of ramen noodles. I went to community and campus meetings largely for the free food. I lived in a couple of tiny apartments and was effectively homeless for one short period.”

Read more on The Simple Dollar.

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia.

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How to Profit from Collecting & Selling Scrap Gold

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scrap gold

I’ve been collecting scrap metal for as long as I can remember. As a kid, my siblings and I would pick scrap metal from trash left out on garbage days. We would find copper wire, junk auto parts, pop cans – basically anything our dad could take us to sell at the scrap yard. It was labor intensive work for kids, but we were a lower middle income family that liked making something out of nothing.

But, one day while I was walking home from school, I found a ring and took it home to show my dad. He thought it was gold and took it to get checked out. It turned out to be 14K gold and I got $20.00, a fortune for a kid in the 60’s! Even back then, I realized that was a lot of money for something so small, and I’d rather find something like that than look for aluminum or stainless steel.

As a young adult in my twenties, I became apprenticed to a bench jeweler. There, I learned how to work with gold using my torch and jewelers tools. I practiced on rings that my boss had purchased as scrap. That way, if I screwed up, it wasn’t on a customer’s ring. Eventually, I got the hang of it. It takes time, patience, and lots of practice to reach a certain skill level. After several years, I decided to venture out on my own.

My husband and I opened our own store, and I became the bench jeweler. My husband kept his day job at the airline while I ran the store. I enjoyed having a “real” career. It took a long time to build up inventory due to the price of gold.  So, to help reduce the costs, we applied for a Pawnbrokers license, and got one. Now, I could buy used gold or loan money to a customer on their jewelry. It was actually good for my customers. If they needed money temporarily, they could get a collateral loan and come back within 90 days to pick it up. If they didn’t, it became my property. I also bought gold from people who didn’t need a loan, but just wanted to get rid of unwanted jewelry. I did this for many years until my husband got a new job at O’Hare Airport in Chicago.

I began closing the store down and got ready for the move. Once, we moved, I worked for another jeweler for a few years, but decided I needed a change. So, I began taking classes at Purdue Calumet in Hammond, Indiana. I got my Associates Degree in 2004, and worked in Surgery, Dialysis and Prison Nursing. By 2015, I was getting burned out and started looking for a side job so I could just work in nursing part time. I wanted to start an online jewelry store and would stock it from finding good jewelry at resale shops, consignment stores, on Craigslist, and at garage sales. I started my Etsy store “Gold Is Wealth” in January 2015.

How you can profit from scrap gold

I’d like to tell people how to find these bargains, even with little or no experience. This is to encourage those who need extra money, or need a little side job that is flexible. You don’t need a lot of money to begin, just a few simple tools. (There is some risk, but the rewards are great). Wherever I go, I always carry TWO things with me when I’m scrounging for gold bargains. I have a 10x loupe, and a magnet. That’s it.

I got my loupe from Amazon for around $6.00 and I bought magnets 2 for $1.00 at Harbor Freight. The magnets are the size of a domino. A little later, I bought an acid test kit for $10.00 to determine if a metal was 10K, 14K, 18K, 22K or just junk. I also bought a gram scale online, too. Mine is pretty nice and it measures grams, pennyweights, ounces, pounds, and grains. It was about $100.00, but you can find them for much less. In Europe, they have 9K gold or 375 marked on their pieces. In the USA, it has to be at least 10K to be called “gold”. The European stamps also have tiny emblems within a square inside of a ring or on a pendant.

I keep my loupe in my front pocket of my jeans, in case I need it. My magnet is in the opposite pocket. When I’m at a garage sale, looking at a piece of jewelry, these are some of the things I look for to determine if its genuine or fake. (The owner often doesn’t know and I don’t ask, because then they think it really might be something too valuable to sell).

First, does it have a stamp anywhere? For a ring, it’s inside the band. On a chain, it’s on the oval or round “quality tag” next to the clasp. The clasp should also have a stamp on it. On a necklace, its usually on the “bail”, which is the loop connected to the pendant. But, I’ve also seen it stamped inside the back of the pendant. If you see a stamp that says 10K, 14K, 18K, that’s good. Usually. Remember, there are always exceptions to the rule.

Gold manufactured outside the USA will say 417 for 10K, 585 for 15K, or 750 for 18K. The numbers just represents how many parts of gold per 1000 parts. So, 417 means 417 parts per thousand are gold, or 41.7%. The rest is alloy to “harden” the metal. The look of each Karat is different. 10K looks lightest, but can also darken and look brownish from oxidation. 14K is the medium gold tone most of us are used to seeing, but 18K looks yellowish, almost fake. 22K is distinctly yellow.

Another way to distinguish real from fake is the magnet test. If the item sticks to your magnet, it’s not gold. Maybe gold plated, but it has another metal underneath. However, I have seen a fake clasp on a real gold chain. It does happen from time to time. Sometimes people don’t want to pay the price for a gold replacement once a clasp has broken. They will opt for a plated one. Once in a while, my magnet faintly sticks to a big clasp, like a lobster claw clasp. It has a metal spring inside of it which compresses & decompresses to open & close the clasp. Test the clasp and chain separately.

I have seen a real gold clasp on a fake chain, when somebody was being deliberately deceptive. They get upset when I take the magnet out. Brass is a look-alike metal to gold, especially when it’s been highly polished. Brass won’t react to the magnet!! Be careful. I’ve seen a lot of fake gold rings at the flea market which are brass. They are even stamped 10K or 14K. If you want to take a chance, don’t spend more than a few bucks. After a few days, they turn a weird greenish brown color. They also tend to be stamped in weird places that genuine gold is not. For instance, a giant 14K stamp in the middle of a religious pendant, like the Virgin Mary. It’s too obvious. It should be small and on the back.

Feel the weight of a piece. Heft it in your hand. Gold is more dense than other metals. The higher the Karat, the more dense it is. 18K is really heavy. Toss it up and down a few times, then try tossing another metal. You can feel the difference. Just remember, all these little things together can give you clues as to what you are looking at.

Another thing is that fake gold is shiny and flashy. Genuine gold rarely is. It’s been worn, and has a dull gold look to it. I will look at that piece under my loupe and look at scratches on the metal. Does it still look gold under the scratches or gouges? Good. Check the prongs on a ring. Are the prongs a different color than the rest of the ring? It could be plating that has worn off, after all it’s the spot that gets the most wear. Are the stones “glued in” with no prongs holding the stones? Bad. (Unless, it is bezel set, where a rim of gold is surrounding the stone). Look for GREEN spots anywhere on the piece of jewelry. It indicates gold plated jewelry that has reacted with moisture. I find it especially at clasps, tabs on a chain, inside a ring where skin acids have worn away plating, or anywhere it gets a lot of friction, as in between links of a chain.

Here are some common manufacturing marks if it’s not gold:

  • GE-Gold Electroplate
  • HGE-Heavy Gold Electroplate
  • GF-Gold Filled (More gold than plated, but not karat gold)
  • 1/20 of 12K gold- Gold Plated
  • 925-Sterling silver. Sometimes, gold plating will be over the silver

When in doubt, its better to pass on it. However, if its only a buck or two, you might want to take the chance. If someone is really pushing you to buy it, be wary. Most of my best finds have been under $10.00 for gold jewelry. If you can’t afford to lose it, don’t spend it.

Now, when you have some pieces that you think are gold, go to a reputable jeweler to verify what you have. Sometimes they will offer to buy it for half of what it’s worth, but you can sell it to the same smelter they are and cut out the middle man. Just get a quote from the jeweler and do some research at home.

There are places online to sell gold, but prices are all over the board. Some won’t tell you the gram price until they see it first, then will give you a quote. One place I like to deal with is Goldmastersusa.com. The site is easy to navigate. Just click on “Selling scrap gold”. Then you click on what type of gold you have, such as 10K or 14K. You get different prices per gram because they are different percentages of gold. It also shows you right up front, how much per gram you are getting. Type in how many grams you have and voila!!! You get an instant price for your gold. Once you hit “Accept”, you need to get an email with a confirmation number for your transaction. That number goes into the mailing package with your gold. It needs to be mailed in 24 hours, as the price of gold can go up or down quickly. After a few times, you’ll get the hang of it. Make sure you insure it for the full amount, just in case it gets lost in the mail.

I hope you have found this helpful, and I wish you all Happy Hunting, and may the odds be ever in your favor!

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Why You Need to Prepare for the Cashless Society

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cash wikimediaEarlier this month, the European Central Bank suggested that the 500 Euro note needs to be eliminated. Not long after, academics and policy makers in the US started to call for the elimination of the $100 bill. This isn’t something that the average person really thinks about on a regular basis, or even cares about. The vast majority of our purchases are done through digital channels these days. Unless you’re about to buy a used car on Craigslist, you probably won’t be needing the hundred-dollar bill. For most people, eliminating it would be an inconvenience at best.

So what gives? Why is anyone even considering the elimination of these bills? It seems like there is simply no need for it.

The truth is there are a lot of reasons why governments and banks want to eliminate these high denomination notes, and none of them are good. It should go without saying that the people who are pushing this are not going to give you a straight answer. You’re going to hear them give the same excuse over and over again for the foreseeable future: Large denominations are indispensable for black market transactions. They enable drug dealers, tax evaders, corruption, and terrorism.

But that’s just what they’ll say in the beginning. One day they’ll give all those same excuses, except instead of suggesting the elimination of large denomination bills, they’ll suggest we get rid of cash instead.

That’s right. What the government, multinational corporations, and the central banks really want, is a completely cashless society, and they’re going to start by eliminating the bills we don’t use very often. Pro-gun supporters will recognize this strategy as the “slippery slope.” Start out with something small that sets a precedent, and quietly eliminate everything over a long period time so no one notices.

Eliminate certain bills, restrict large cash purchases, demonize people and businesses that hold large amounts of cash and confiscate their wealth through asset forfeiture, flag bank accounts that transfer large sums of money, etc. You may recognize some of those as policies that are already in place. The anti-cash crusade is happening right now, and here’s the real reason why:

For starters, there are people in both the public and private sector that want to track everything you do. Like a stalker, they just really really want to get to know you better. They want an intimate knowledge of what you buy and sell. The corporations that are in bed with our government would love to have this knowledge, so they can do a better job of tailoring their marketing to you.

The governments that are in bed with the corporations want to use that knowledge to rule every aspect of your life. You can’t live if you can’t buy and sell, so without cash you’ll be locked into a system that you can’t opt out of. They say that cash is for terrorists and criminals, but they don’t want you to realize that you’re in the same boat as them. No cash means no anonymous transactions.

The second biggest reason? They want to steal from you. Taxes aren’t enough. They can’t bring themselves to stop spending our money and putting us into debt, and we don’t want to give them anymore money, so raising taxes through a legitimate political process is off the table.

Instead they’re going to lower your interest rates. How low? Ideally they want negative interest rates. They want to make it impossible for you to save money. The excuse for this will be different from before. They’ll do it when the next major recession hits, so they can say that it’ll be good for the economy. If saving money means losing money, then you’ll spend money, thus supporting the economy. But really, they just want to legally steal from you (insert taxation joke here). They know that if cash isn’t eliminated before these negative rates are implemented, you can simply pull your money out of the bank and hide it in your mattress. They don’t want to leave you with any choice.

As you can see, physical cash is an essential means for maintaining your liberty. That’s why, in light of recent calls to disband high denomination bills, two right-wing Swiss politicians have proposed the exact opposite. Philip Brunner and Manuel Brandberg have suggested the creation of a 5000 franc note to ensure the safe haven status of Switzerland’s currency. Their reason? Cash is so important to individual liberty, that it could be compared to the right to bear arms.

In this context “cash is comparable to the service firearm kept by Swiss citizen soldiers,” the pair argued in their motion, saying they both “guarantee freedom”.

“In France and Italy already cash payments of only up to 1,000 euros are allowed and the question of the abolition of cash is being seriously discussed and considered in Europe, “ Brunner said on his Facebook page.

The move toward electronic payments allows governments “total surveillance” over individuals, the pair claim.

So how will you preserve your freedom if, and probably when this comes to pass?

The most obvious solution would be to stock up on gold and silver before the cash ban arrives, because that is really the best alternative. Precious metals provide the only other convenient way to make untraceable purchases (you’ll probably start to see underground markets pop up to cater to many of the normal purchases you make every day).  After all, gold and silver were the most popular forms of currency until the 20th century. Alternatively you could put your money in any physical asset that may hold its value, such as land or firearms for example; but for daily purchases, gold and silver are king.

Of course, the government could try to ban that as well. They tried confiscating gold before and they could do it again. However, it’s not going to do them any good. When negative interest rates arrive with the cashless society, there will be millions of people moving their assets into gold and silver. They’ll be joining everyone who is operating in the black market, who will have already moved into precious metals by necessity.

There would be widespread disobedience against those rules. Nobody is going to give a damn about the laws at that point. If the government tries to brazenly wipe out everything you’ve earned throughout your entire life, you won’t be too concerned about the law and neither will millions of other savers. With that many people, it will be impossible for the government to really clamp down on it.

Honestly, they’ll be just as successful in preventing you from owning gold and silver, as they are in preventing you from buying pot. And the cops will have their savings wiped out as well, so they’ll be playing the same game you are. It’ll be prohibition all over again.

In short, gold and silver are the best things you can buy to prepare yourself for the cashless society. A lot of people will be rushing into precious metals if our government decides to get rid of cash, and the government will likely be helpless to stop you. So stock up now before the herd realizes what’s happening to them.

Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.

Joshua’s website is Strange Danger

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

The Ultimate Guide to Gold as an Investment

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 The Ultimate Guide to Gold as an Investment

The Ultimate Guide to Gold as an Investment

Introduction

Gold has long been revered as a symbol of wealth and prosperity and it has an intrinsic value as well as being used as a currency as a method of supporting the flat money of various countries when people lose faith in that nation’s paper currency.

Gold is primarily viewed and used as an investment and also enjoys enduring popularity through the jewelry created with the precious metal. It is also used in some industrial applications such as a component in computers.

Buying Gold as an Investment – why should you invest in gold?

Holding value

A significant reason why people invest in gold is that it has performed admirably in holding its value over the long-term in comparison to other assets like paper currency, some coins or even stocks, which can lose their entire value if the company goes bust.

Inflation hedge

The traditional view, which is supported by historical evidence, is that gold offers an excellent hedge against inflation and if you were to look at the years where inflation was at its highest since the second world war, you would see that gold outperform the Dow Jones by some margin on each occasion.

This aspect of gold prices tends to encourage investors to think that the only time to invest in gold is when inflation is on the rise or in times of financial uncertainty or when the political climate is volatile.

You can find statistics to support the theory that gold prices often rise when confidence in governments is low and it is sometimes referred to as the crisis commodity, due to the fact that investors tend to seek the comfort of gold in times of tension in the world.

Supply and demand

Production of new gold from mines has actually been in decline since we entered a new millenium and a large percentage of the supply of gold introduced into the market since the 1990’s has actually come from gold bullion sold from the vaults of central banks.

There has been a slight revival in production output recently but as it takes anywhere between 5-10 years to bring a new mine into full production, so we are yet to see the impact of this in the market.

The general rule is that a reduction in the supply of gold will help to fuel an increase in gold prices, based on simple supply and demand principles.

Growth in demand

An increase in the wealth of emerging economies and a subsequent rise in the so-called middle-classes, has certainly helped to boost the demand for gold.

It should also be remembered that gold is deeply ingrained in the culture of some countries and India is the best example of that, being one of the largest gold-consuming countries on the planet.

China deserves special mention too, as gold bars are a traditional form of saving. The growth in wealth of consumer in China will help to fuel growth in demand for gold for the foreseeable future.

Investors are also demonstrating an appetite for gold as more of us seemingly take the view that a commodity such as gold should be viewed as investment class worthy of consideration and want to make it part of their allocation of funds.

Evidence of this interest in gold can be seen by learning that one of the largest ETF’s in the United States, joined the ranks of the largest holders of gold bullion, just four years after it was launched.

Part of your investment portfolio

Not everyone likes the case for gold and Warren Buffet is rather famous for not liking gold as an investment, but many other shrewd investors consider it to be an essential part of a diversified investment portfolio.

We take a look at how to invest in gold on other pages of this website and you can consider the merits of either investing in physical gold such as buying bullion or coins or speculating using ETF’s amongst other ways of gaining an exposure to this popular precious metal.

It should be noted that although the price of gold can demonstrate volatility in the short term, history has so far shown that it is more than able to maintain its value over a longer period. It also does often provide a good hedge against inflation and the potential erosion in the value of major currencies, so it is an investment that needs consideration.

The Pyramid of Gold InvestmentPyramid_of_Gold_Investment

Gold Bullion Facts

  1. A reasonable percentage of long term investors tend to add some gold to their investment portfolio and whilst many are aware of the fact that adding a precious metal like gold which is not correlated with other asset classes enhances their risk/reward profile, there are some facts about gold bullion that they may not be aware of.

  2. The term bullion actually applies to either coins or bars and it is also interesting to note that gold is one of the heaviest metals and is over 19 times heavier than water.

  3. One of the reasons why gold tends to retain its perceived rarity value and hold its value over time, is the fact that the world’s gold supply only increases by an average of 2,000 tons per year.

  4. Despite the amount of gold produced throughout our history, you could still fit the entire world’s supply of the precious metal into a cube that measures just 65.5 feet.

  5. The most popular coin in terms of volume of sales is the American Eagle which was first produced in 1985 and the heaviest gold bullion coin that you could acquire is the Australian Kangaroo, which weighs 32.15 ounces.

  6. The material value of gold is influenced by three specific factors, condition, purity and weight.

  7. Gold bullion represents the purest form of the precious metal and it can be acquired as bullion bars (also known as ingots) or coins.

  8. If you see a dealer advertising 100% pure gold, you should be suspicious. This is because bona-fide gold dealers never advertise 100% pure gold, due to the fact the forging process used introduces small traces of other substances and therefore makes it impossible to declare absolute purity.

  9. The highest quality bullion that you can obtain is 99.99% pure and collectors and investors should ideally search for proof-quality coins which bear no marks from wear or use.

 TLW

How to Buy Gold

If you are interested in buying gold as part of your investment strategy, there are numerous ways to acquire a physical holding or gain exposure to the precious metal through a fund or trading platform.

Gold bullion

If you want gold that offers a combination of intrinsic and potentially rising investment value, your primary consideration should be to consider gold bars or coins.

Gold bars come in metric sizes and are available to purchase at the prevailing gold price for that day, plus a premium to cover manufacturing and marketing. The important thing to remember is that the smaller the bar you buy, the higher the premium you will probably have to pay.

A one-gram bar could have more than a 40% premium attached to it for the retailer whereas a 1 kg bar will obviously cost you considerably more to acquire, but the markup is probably more likely to be in the region of 5%.

We recommend BullionVault – the world’s #1 online bullion dealer.

Coins

Gold coins are popular with buyers and 22-carat sovereigns enjoy enduring popularity, especially amongst British investors.

The value of these coins varies according to their intrinsic value as well as when they were minted, having an influence on their price and value.

Modern coins dated from 2000 onwards will cost more than their immediate value but sovereigns that were made in the late Victorian period can offer the potential for greater gains due to their rarity, but this means they will also be more expensive to acquire.

Exchange-traded funds

It could be argued that gold ETF’s are not technically funds, due to the fact that they follow a single security.

The purpose of an ETF is to track the gold price via the stock exchange and you can speculate whether the price is going to rise or fall and profit or lose according to how right your opinion was in a specific period of time.

ETF’s are regulated financial products and you can expect to pay a dealing commission on each trade that is probably around 0.4%.

Unit trusts and investment trusts

There are specific unit trusts and investment trusts listed on the stock market which invest in the shares of gold mining companies and other commodities.

Investing in one of these trusts can provide you with exposure to gold without the need to actually buy any of the precious metal itself. You will find that these specialist funds can be quite volatile and gold mining equities can often be more volatile than the gold price, but patient investors might be rewarded with a mixture of patience and good-timing.

Gold shares

You might decide that you would prefer to invest directly in a publicly-quoted company and buy shares of companies that trade or mine gold.
The share price of individual companies is no less volatile than investing in a unit or investment trust and you can expect plenty of noticeable fluctuations in the value of these companies, but they could still be a reasonable portfolio diversifier if you have the right risk attitude to tolerate the volatility.

 

A number of investors who are looking to buy into gold, will often question which is the better option, gold bullion or coins?

Investing in Gold bullion vs Gold Coins

It is hard not argue with the fact that for a fairly serious and large-scale investor, buying gold bars is a very simple and efficient method of obtaining direct exposure to the precious metal.

Economies of scale often mean that the larger bars are usually available at the lowest premium to their actual intrinsic value. Smaller value gold bars generally cost more per ounce in order for the seller to maintain a profit margin and to account for production costs.

Buying a kilo bar of gold may well work out cheaper than buying smaller bars but you will often find that your choice of buyer is restricted due to the size and value of the gold you have in one bar, meaning you may well end up selling to a dealer who deals in greater quantities than a private buyer.

There are a number of advantages and benefits to buying gold bars.

The main advantage it offers is that gold bars are relatively easy to trade, so you should always be able to find buyers and sellers in the market, which is not the case when it comes to some gold coins.

Another key selling point is that the premium you pay when buying gold bars is normally lower than you would pay when acquiring coins. if you are prepared to negotiate the best deal, it is often possible to acquire a gold bar at close to the spot price of gold with a small premium added.

The other reason why gold bullion is so popular with a number of investors, is that you are holding physical gold, so it provides a level of comfort that you are holding something of value that remains yours whatever happens to the economy and stock markets, although its value will rise and fall in response to the influential factors.

Gold coins

There are millions of gold coins being bought and sold on a regular basis and they are relatively easy to acquire with numerous dealers and outlets selling different types of gold coin to investors and collectors.

Gold coins should have a high level of gold purity and certain coins like the American Eagle and the Canadian Maple Leaf are popular with buyers.

There has been a shift away from coins towards investing in gold through ETF’s but there are signs more recently that sentiment may well be returning to trading in coins like the Maple Leaf, which is attractive to investors as it weighs in at a manageable 24 carat gold.

There are certainly disadvantages to investing gold coins and one aspect that is off-putting to investors is the fact that prices have been seen to fluctuate fairly wildly at certain times, so timing can be critical to when you make a  purchase.

It should be noted that gold coins as an investment, should be held for a minimum of three years in order to see any potential upside in their value and buying coins should not therefore be viewed as a short term strategy.

You also need to be vigilant when it comes to buying coins and arrange to keep them yourself rather than agree for someone to store them on your behalf.

Although there are many reputable dealers who will not sell you gold coins that don’t exist, there are some scams around that agree to hold what turn out to be non-existent coins on your behalf and take your money, so always take physical possession of your coins in the first instance.Surviveendofdays

Coins vs bullion

There are pros and cons to buying coins and the same comments apply to buying bullion, especially if you are looking at buying larger quantities.

There are certain situations where some coins might offer a better resale value compared to bullion and although a larger percentage of investors would probably come down in favor of buying bullion over coins, you should also consider that older types of coins can often be sold at a premium.

It all depends on what your personal preference is with regard to collecting and holding gold, but from a cost perspective, larger gold bars are often the most cost-efficient way of acquiring physical gold.

Certain coins can turn out to be a better investment than bars and there is also the fact that more dealers, jewellers and individual collectors worldwide will be wanting to buy coins than there are bullion dealers, so it is potentially giving you more options for selling.

Both gold coins and bullion often attract a premium when you are buying them so you need to factor this into your sums when you are deciding whether to buy coins or gold bars.

 

Investing in Gold Bullion vs Gold Stocks

A common dilemma posed to investors who want to gain some exposure to gold, is whether they should acquire some physical gold in the form of bullion or invest in some stocks for gold producers.

As with a lot of these either or questions, the answer has a lot to do with timing and market sentiment rather than being simply a matter of one option being better than the other.

Gold stocks take the lead

If you take a snapshot of the performance of gold bullion and stocks in the third quarter of 2014, this is the point where gold mining stock returns were able to outpace bullion for the first time in about 24 months.

As of August 2014 the NYSE Arca Gold BUGS Index was displaying a 22.31% return for gold stocks whereas the yellow metal itself, was lagging behind at 7.74% for the same period.

Which is the better investment?

It would of course be foolish and financially dangerous to take a set of figures in isolation and try to make a case on the strength of the numbers, however impressive they appear.

As with any form of investing, it is always better to take a longer term view in order to try and establish how you might want to invest in gold.

If you took at look at the position in 2012 for example, you would have noted that the price of physical gold had gone up by 110% from where it was in 2008, whereas the BUGS Index had only risen by 15% and the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) had only increased in value by 7%.

These two sets of figures illustrate that market sentiment and economic conditions can influence whether gold bullion or gold stocks rise or fall and one can do better than the other at certain points.

Understanding the market

Some investors are off the opinion that mining stocks offer leverage and when you look at how they perform during a bull market, you can see the merit of that argument.

If you bought gold bullion in 2001 and held on to it until 2006, you would have seen its value rise by 92%. In the same period, the BUGS Index rose by 648%.

if you had maintain your investment in gold stocks, you would have benefitted from a further 39% rise in value up to 2012, but in the same period, the price of gold rose by 232%.

What you can probably gauge from these figures is that when miners are doing well, the price of gold is also likely to follow suit. Sentiment does not appear to have changed that much over the years and when economic conditions get tough, such as the global financial crisis in 2008, investors often seek the comfort of holding physical gold as a hedge against underperforming markets.

Gold season

It is also worth taking into account the fact that there is a time of the year when physical gold is more in demand than usual.

Autumn sees the gold jewelry industry replenish its stock and when you have world events going on at the same time that threaten market confidence, such as unrest in Ukraine and the Middle East, this can cause the gold price to spike.

These market conditions and the potential for turbulence in supply chains can actually benefit not just investors in bullion itself, but also the mining stocks as well.

The reason for this potential win/win situation is that mining companies have the ability to action some cost-cutting initiatives in order to maintain their profit margins.

Price fluctuations

The best investment strategies are often those that plan for the medium to long term and investing in gold bullion or stocks is generally considered to be a long term play if you are going to reap the full rewards on your investment.

Gold is the same as other precious metals in that prices and values can often be susceptible to adverse economic or political events, which is mainly down to the fact that it is an investment viewed in isolation and therefore can come under the scrutiny of investors and analysts, who collectively could influence prices in the very short term.

There is an argument in favor of gold bullion in certain conditions and there is also an equally compelling case to be made for gold stocks as well, when you look at the past performance of both.

The general consensus of opinion amongst gold analysts and traders who operate in this sector, is that a balanced mix of both physical metals and mining stocks will probably you serve you well and allow you to gain from various market responses rather than just the one scenario that could influence the price of gold and miner stocks.

It is also considered prudent that give the potential volatility of gold prices, that you should limit your total exposure to gold to between 5% and 10% of your investment portfolio.

 

Top 5 Physical Gold Savings Accounts

1)  Royal Mint

The Royal Mint is asking the public to trust its new service aimed at those looking for an online solution to buying, storing, and selling gold. The Ministry of Defence holds all of the Mint’s precious metals for the service, which is guarded 24 hours a day by armed guards.

2) GoldMoney

GoldMoney is an online precious metals dealer that contracts with (primarily) Via Mat for storage. It’s audited annually by an independent accounting firm. But, it’s operations look more like a “gold bank” than anything else.

The company sets up an online trading account for you, where you’re able to deposit money, earn interest on domestic and foreign currencies, buy and sell precious metals, and arrange for storage or delivery.

Prices are very competitive and the customer service is what you would expect from a gold dealer. Like most gold dealer and depository arrangements, you own the precious metals outright. GoldMoney has no equitable, or legal, ownership or interest in your gold or silver. When you buy gold, through GoldMoney, you are engaging the company to act as an agent for the purpose of contracting for physical custody of your metal.

GoldMoney’s holdings are fully allocated, which means that there is physical metal in a vault that is specifically yours. This differs from unallocated arrangements which are popular with some online services. Unallocated holdings mean that there is a pool of gold, but there is no specific delineation or separation of your gold from someone else’s.

3) Bullionvault

Bullionvault is the major competitor to GoldMoney. It was started in 2005 and today is owned by Galmarley Limited and registered in Great Britain, doing business on the 12th floor of the Landmark House, Blacks Road, Hammersmith, in London.

Like Goldmoney, it operates as a dealer and arranges for storage of gold through Via Mat. In 2009, the company won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise (Innovation) for its use of technology in making the bullion market efficient and reliable for private customers.

Then, in 2013, it was again awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for growing overseas sales by 140 percent in 3 years.

The company boasts over $2 billion in stored bullion with 34 tonnes of gold – more reserves than most of the world’s central banks.

4) Kitco

Kitco is one of the most trusted online sources for gold and silver (all precious metals really). Its gold savings accounts come as both allocated and unallocated. The unallocated account, called the Kitco Pool, allows investors to purchase gold at a low cost with no storage fees and a low spread.

Investors can upgrade to allocated storage for a small premium.

5) Everbank

Everbank flies under the radar. Beginning in 1999, the company was started as an alternative to traditional banking, being one of the first traditional banks to also host a suite of competitive online banking products that mirrors traditional banking products.

But, in 2002, the company was sold to First Alliance Bank of Jacksonville. Rather than hurt the bank, it helped it grow into one of the largest privately held banks in the country. Today, it offers gold and silver bullion at 1 percent over the spot price paid by the bank.

This is one of the cheapest options in the marketplace. They’ll also arrange for storage and redemption, turning a basic gold holding account into what amounts to a god savings account. Since they’re based in Jacksonville Florida, it’s also easy to step into a branch location, which isn’t always possible with online gold dealers.

How To Choose A Gold Savings Account

You need to look at gold as a long-term savings. Short term fluctuations spook many savers, and it keeps them from really appreciating the long-term potential of precious metals. If you have a short to intermediate-term need for savings, keep this money in a traditional savings account or use an investment account denominated in your domestic currency.

If you’re willing to hold gold for more than 5 to 10 years, choose a company that will be around for that long, at least. Smaller dealers and firms tend not to be as stable as larger firms in this respect, precisely because the business’s longevity is tied to the owner of the business.

With larger firms that contract out to established vaults for storage, your risk is minimal. Start small, and save as much as you feel comfortable with. Most savers would do well not to overallocate in gold, so if you’re unsure about how much you should invest, talk to a financial planner who specializes in precious metals.

 

Investing in Gold Stocks

There are a number of different ways in which you can gain exposure to gold stocks these days and here is a look at the options and what risks or potential benefits they offer to investors.

Gold miner stocks

The most direct way of investing in gold other than buying bullion itself is by buying gold miner stocks.

This is generally considered a more speculative and therefore riskier method of investing in gold, mainly because you are gambling on the fortunes of one or several gold mining companies rather the market as a whole.

Mining stocks can demonstrate as much as a three-to-one leverage in comparison to the spot price of gold, both on the upside and downside. The fundamental reason why gold miner stocks can be such a risky proposition is that they are trading within the broader equity market and therefore can be susceptible to general stock market sentiment as well as the outlook for gold.

In addition to this, each stock will be scrutinized for their gold production performance and the perceived quality of their reserves as well as the strength of the management team. All of these factors can heavily influence their share price and especially when there has been a general decline in global gold production since the beginning of 2000.

Speculating on the minnows

A common theme amongst more novice investors is to to invest in small gold miners who are in their exploration phase and have little to offer in the way of cash flow or inventory.

What this can mean is that if you get lucky and pick a stock that literally strikes gold, it can make your investment look very shrewd as the stock price rockets, but this is a big gamble as only a small percentage of these trades even strike gold, let alone turn a profit.

These stocks are referred to as Junior Miners and as the name suggests, they are young companies who are trying to become a major source of future mining supply at some point in the future.

if they succeed in finding a source of gold that is economically viable to produce, the very promise of their find is often enough to send the share price soaring. You will be able to find companies who invest heavily in using highly trained geologists and geophysicists in order to improve their odds of success, but investing in any junior mining stock has to be considered as highly speculative and any financial exposure to this type of stock needs to be a very small percentage of your total portfolio.

Quality over quantity

Analysts with the expertise in this sector often advocate the policy of choosing quality over quantity and limiting your portfolio to a spread of no more than 10 different companies in total.

Look for companies with strong production figures and reserve growth and another possible positive indicator is when your target company is demonstrating a policy of buying smaller-cap companies in order to maintain their production levels and continue to grow their profits.

if you are looking to get a spread of gold stocks, investing in up to 10 different companies should give you an opportunity to take a few risks with some more junior miners while having the relative safety net of a strong performing major player in the gold sector.

You will need to be aware that investing gold stocks directly will involve some volatility in prices. if the price of gold drops by 10%, you can often see gold stocks fall by as much as between 20% and 30%.

This level of movement needs to be expected at certain times and some investors sell too early as a result of getting nervous about their investment, which is why investing in gold stocks should be viewed as a long term and speculative play.

Gold Mutual funds

If you are reluctant to invest directly in specific stocks or feel that you do not have the required market knowledge to choose the right portfolio, it may be that investing in a gold mutual fund is the right choice for you.

Investing in a gold mutual fund will give you exposure to a chosen portfolio of gold stocks that will often comprise of some senior gold stocks,which is the description given to a large well-capitalized company with a proven and profitable track record over a number of years.

This type of investment is often considered to be a more conservative approach to gaining some exposure to gold in your investment portfolio and should prove less volatile.

Many experienced investors still take the view that investing in gold through ownership of gold mining stocks or mutual funds, as well as buying gold bullion too, provides them with a direct counter to the performance of the dollar.

Here is a look at the best performing gold mutual funds. Click on the link for each fund to see their performance figures and all other relevant information about their holdings and historical quotes etc.

First Eagle Gold Fund

SGGDX

U.S Global Investors Gold & Precious Metals Fund

USERX

Vanguard Precious Metals & Mining Fund

VGPMX

Gabelli Gold Fund

GLDAX

Franklin Gold & Precious Metals Fund   

FKRCX

Invesco Gold & Precious Metals Fund

IGDAX

Tocqueville Gold Fund

TGLDX

Wells Fargo Advantage Precious Metals Fund

EKWAX

Fidelity Select Gold Portfolio

FGDAX

OCM Gold Fund

OCMGX

These funds predominantly concentrate on investing in gold mining stocks although they may have some physical holdings in gold bullion and also some exposure to other precious metals such as silver and platinum.

You will see that gold funds have had a torrid time in general with one year performance figures that register falls ranging from between 25% and 35% .

This is representative of the weakness of the gold price in recent years and you will therefore form your own opinion as to whether this current scenario offers a buying opportunity or a reason to hold fire on your gold investments until the market shows signs of turning.

As with most successful investments, timing can make a big difference in the short term and also in the longer term if it turns out that you invested near the bottom of a market that has subsequently risen.

We are not specifically recommending any of these gold funds to invest in but simply pointing out their performance for your own interest.USDeception

 

Your Guide to Gold IRAs

If you are of the opinion that you need to take action to protect your wealth and retirement savings from an unpredictable economic future, you would be one of a considerable number of investors who consider that gold and other precious metals should form part of their diversified portfolio.

One of the least risky and tax-efficient ways of investing in precious metals like gold is to convert part of their 401 (k), annuity or IRA to a physical gold bullion backed IRA, which is also referred to as a gold IRA rollover.

The fundamental point about a gold IRA is that you are acquiring ownership of physical assets rather than financial assets

When you choose to invest in a gold IRA it is essential that you understand how you want to invest the funds you have available and also fully comprehend how your chosen investment strategy will impact your planning needs.

The most important and basic question that you need to be asking yourself is what are your reasons for deciding to invest in physical bullion?

The answer to that question may well consist of a number of key points but the three most salient reasons are as follows.

You are looking for a better balance of your portfolio through diversification and you also want an element of protection too. If you have an investment portfolio that is heavily biased towards stocks, bonds and mutual funds, you are leaving yourself exposed to how the financial markets perform whereas an allocation of up to 10% of your total funds being invested in gold and other precious metals would help redress the balance of risk and provide another layer of protection against adverse stock market conditions.

Another reason why some investors look to invest some of their money in a gold IRA is that they are fearful of the performance of major currencies like the US dollar and want a hedge against it.

The third principle reason for investing in a gold IRA is the fact that there is the opportunity for future profit if you believe that the price of gold will continue to rise in the future.

IRS restrictions

Before looking in greater detail at how to choose and set up your gold IRA, it is worth pointing out that the IRS has some restrictions in place and strict rules about what you can invest in when it comes to physical ownership of bullion and precious metal coins.

The Internal Revenue Code permits IRA’s to own specific gold, silver and platinum coins and bullion, which meet their applicable fineness standards.

Some of the most popular coins such as the American Eagle, Canadian Maple Leaf and Silver Eagle coins as well as gold and silver bars, would qualify provided they are certified as at least 99.9% pure.

These purity restrictions will exclude some well-known coins like the South African Krugerrand which don’t come up to the required standard and the same applies to any bullion bars that fall below the specified purity level.

Any coins or bullion that you acquire for your IRA will have to be held by the IRA trustee and not by your directly, which means you can’t hold gold in a safety deposit box in your name for example and still qualify for the tax advantage of an IRA.

Your existing retirement vehicle

A good starting point when looking at the possibility of investing in precious metals such as gold through your existing retirement vehicle, is to verify what type of scheme you are currently subscribed to and what limitations or options apply to you in relation to achieving a gold IRA rollover.

Here is a list of the most common retirement schemes in the US and a summary of contribution limits and allowable investments.

Plan                           2014 $ Contribution Limit      Roth Option  Gold Bullion Allowable?

401 (k)                         17,500 / 23,000                        Yes                   Possible

Solo 401(k)                 17,500 / 23,000                        Yes                   Yes

Keogh Plan              52,000                                         No                    No

403(b)                       17,500 / 23,000                           Yes                   No

457(b)                      17,500 / 23,000                            Yes                   No

SIMPLE IRA             12,500 / 14,500                            Yes          Possible   

SEP IRA              52,000                                         Yes                  Possible

Profit Sharing          52,000                                          No                   No

Plan

Money Purchase     52,000                                          No                   No

Plan

Precious Metals      5,500 / 6,500                                Yes                  Yes

IRA

These are just some of the more common retirement plans and you would need to check with your chosen financial adviser to get specific advice about your current situation and options.

Roth Option

The Roth Option referred to in the table is an option that is available with some employer-sponsored qualified plans and gives employees the option to deposit money into their retirement plans on an after-tax basis.

The Roth option is seen as highly advantageous for well-compensated employees who have a high income that is above the threshold to permit Roth IRA contributions. It allows annual contributions which could give them the opportunity to accumulate a substantial amount of tax-free cash by the time the reach retirement age and if this applies to you, it may be worth seeking advice to see how this scenario can be used with a gold IRA.

Choosing the right custodian for your gold IRA

In order to set up a secure gold IRA that meets all the right requirements and provides the right investment platform for your money, you will have to choose a suitable custodian.

As they will be acting as a custodian for your gold investments in order to comply with IRS requirements, you can understand why it is highly preferable to select a provider who is not just competent but also qualified.

It is advisable to spend some time carrying out due diligence and to check and verify the credentials of the custodian you are thinking of using by checking their rating with accredited sources and reviewing customer feedback and reviews posted on trusted sites or from advisors that you already have a relationship with.

Check whether the custodian has an accreditation with organizations such as the Better Business Bureau and verify their rating with someone like TrustLink.

Other key attributes

In addition to checking out from a financial and customer performance point of view, you also need to clarify whether the gold IRA company meets certain service standards as well.

Check whether they are able to offer you gold IRA rollovers if you have an existing IRA and also verify if their scheme permits investments in other precious metals besides gold.

Clarify what arrangements they have for secure storage of gold and what buy-back and guarantee policies they offer to their clients. It also normally more cost-effective for you if they offer a flat fee for their services rather than a scaling fee, which can see charges eat into your investment value.

Make sure you do not buy gold from a company that is not in a position to create and manage an IRA for you.

401(k) to Gold Bullion IRA

If you are looking to convert your existing 401(k) to a physical gold 401(k), there are a number of steps you need to follow in order to achieve this.

Converting your 401(k) savings account to a gold bullion IRA is relatively simple but is dependent on your current situation.

Previous employer

If your 401(k) is from a previous company that you no longer work for, you should be able to roll over these funds into a Traditional IRA. After the funds have been successfully deposited in an IRA, they can then be used to purchase the gold, using a trusted IRA custodian which you would already have selected.

Existing employer

If you are still a current employee of the company that hosts your 401(k) account, it is still achievable to free up these funds for a rollover by using the in-service distribution option.

What this means is that rather than being classed as a loan, it is actual distribution of funds that can be rolled over, provided the transaction is completed within 60 days to a Self-directed IRA, so that there are no tax consequences.

You would need to ask your current employer whether their plan allows for an in-service distribution option and if this is the case, ask them for information on how to get through the process.

No In-service option

If your employer does not offer this option and you can’t use an In-service option, there are still some avenues left for you to achieve your requirement.

One step would be to make a formal request personally or use the chosen IRA provider to approach your employer and ask if they are prepared to add a precious metals option to the company’s 401(k) plan.

Business owner

If you run your own company, you can get help setting up a company gold 401(k) plan. This will allow the owners of the company and its employees to roll their retirement funds into the company’s gold bullion savings plan.

It also opens up the opportunity to maximize the total annual amount that can be contributed on either a pre-tax or post-tax basis, which will hopefully give a boost to your long-term savings.

Reasons for investing in a gold IRA

Whilst the information provided here should help you decide if you want rollover into a gold IRA or not, it is not given as a recommendation and you should take professional advice so that you can make an informed decision based on your employment, financial and tax status as an individual.

The usual caveat applies that past performance is no guide to future performance but at least by looking at how you might have fared with a gold IRA investment taken out in the past, you can at least get some feel for whether there is good potential to boost your investment portfolio.

If you had invested $30,000 into a typical gold IRA back in 2001, the value of that holding would have grown to over $170,000 by 2013. The figure was actually higher at some points in the intervening years and highlights the fact that investing in gold and investing in general, tends to reward those with patience.

This is probably one reason why a gold IRA could be a useful part of your retirement investment strategy.

Cashing out

One of the attractive features of a gold IRA account is that when the time comes to start taking distributions out of your plan, you have the choice of either taking physical possession of your gold or liquidating them so that you generate cash.

FAQ’s

As a way of a quick reminder and to cover some basic investment questions, here are some of the frequently asked questions in relation to gold IRA’s.

Why should I create a gold IRA?

Many investors choose to create a gold-backed IRA as a way of hedging against paper-based investments and because gold tends to hold its value over the long term.

Can I convert my existing IRA into a gold IRA?

Yes, all you have to do is set up a self-directed gold IRA and give your custodian instructions to fund the new gold IRA with your selected permissible gold investments.

Can I use existing gold investments in my gold IRA?

You are not allowed to use your existing gold investments and the IRS rules dictate that you must only purchase specifically approved types of gold and this does not include what you already have.

Can I store my own gold?

You are not allowed to personally store any gold under the rules of the scheme. This means that any gold investments in your gold IRA are held in a trusted repository by your custodian.

What kind of gold is acceptable?

There are specific IRS rules about the types of gold you can hold in your IRA. As a general guide, the gold must be at least 99.5% pure and only certain coins like the American Eagle are allowed, but they must be legal tender coins.

 

Guide to holding gold in a 401(k) plan

A 401(k) is a retirement plan that is sponsored by your employer and it provides you with the opportunity to invest a percentage of your salary into a company scheme without taxes being deducted.

Taxes are only deductible once the money is withdrawn and the general suggestion is to make use of this tax-free opportunity and contribute enough into your 401 (k) so that the company matches the amount you put in under the rules of the scheme.

The 401 (k) plan is named after the relevant section of the tax code related to pension investments and was introduced into legislation during the 1980’s as a way of encouraging workers to supplement their pensions through a company scheme.

The traditional company pension was entirely managed by the employer and these pension funds were then used to pay out a steady income to employees during their retirement years. Some government jobs or workers who are represented by a particularly strong union, may still be eligible for an old-style pension, but 401K’s are now the default option due to the significant costs of running a pension scheme and you are now more likely to be offered a 401 (k) plan.

Greater control

The fundamental point about a 401(k) is that it gives you a level of control over how your money is invested, which is not the case with the more traditional company scheme that existed previously.

Most of the plans available give you choice of various mutual funds comprising of bonds, stocks and money market investments and a traditional investment route is often to choose what is referred to as a target-date fund. This is a combination of bonds and stocks that takes a progressively more conservative approach with your pension money, as your retirement date draws closer.

Rules and regulations

As you might expect, there are numerous caveats and restrictions that apply to saving via a 401 (k) and in the majority of cases, one if the primary rules is that you are not able to tap into your employers contributions as soon as you commence employment.

This is called vesting, and it refers to the amount of time that you have to work for the company before being eligible to gain access to any payments made to your 401 (k). The reason for this restriction is to safeguard against employees leaving early and there are also some fairly complex rules and punitive penalties that govern when you can withdraw your money, if it is before your chosen retirement age.

Investment options

There are a number of viable reasons why you might want to consider your investment options and look at ideas such as transferring your 401k to gold.

Some of the issues associated with 401k investments is that there can be high administration costs for employers, which they may want to pass on to you through various fees. Another point is that although you are presented with a variety of investment options, these are mainly financial assets which can be adversely affected by factors such as hyperinflation, government policy changes and a decline of the US dollar.

It is for these and a number of other reasons, that investors are now becoming more willing to consider other investment ideas such as a 401k to gold IRA rollover.

The case for investing in gold

A large number of financial assets are exposed to the threat of hyperinflation, especially in view of the recent government policy of quantitative easing, whereas the historical perspective is that gold is often more resistant to the effects of hyperinflation.

Another reason for considering transferring your 401k to a gold IRA is that it is a commodity that tends to increase in value during economic uncertainty and can potentially provide a good hedge just before your retirement years where financial instability is something you would want to avoid.

The information given here is not investment advice and you should seek a professional investment adviser’s opinion before taking any action. The aim here is to provide some reasons why you might want to consider the option and some useful information on how to achieve a transfer or rollover into a gold IRA.

Transfer or rollover?

There can be tax advantages to investing in gold through a 401k transfer or rollover, as you will typically create a deferred tax status on your assets until the point when you decide to make a withdrawal. It is also often considered the case by financial experts that the tax laws surrounding gold are generally easier to understand and administer than those relating to a 401k.

If you choose to transfer your assets, this involves instructing the company managing your 401k to transfer your new chosen custodian.

If you choose to rollover, this involves firstly transferring the assets to you and then subsequently on to your next chosen custodian.

An important point to note is that when you do a rollover, you won’t lose your deferred tax status on your assets but this is not necessarily the case when it comes to transfers.

There are specific regulations in place regarding rollovers and the main ones to be aware of are the fact that you have to perform the rollover within 60 days once you have officially started the process.

The other key point to remember is that you can only rollover the same assets once every 12 months.

The general opinion is that the best way to move into a gold IRA from a 401k is to do a rollover instead of a transfer, but you should take specialist advice from someone who can spell out your options and help with the necessary paperwork, if you decide to go ahead.

 

Should You Invest in Gold or Silver?

The simple answer to the question of whether it is best to invest in silver or gold is that there is no specific advantage or point that makes one metal a better investment than the other.

There are times when gold outperforms silver and can be considered a better investment and then there are conversely, points in time when the performance charts suggest that your money would be better in silver.

Percentage returns

As with so many charts and statistics, you can take a set of figures and create a persuasive argument for investing depending on how you view the numbers and when you are analysing them.

A good example would be that if you were to compare the performance of gold against silver for the two years between 2006 and 2008, when all bets were off and the global financial crisis took hold, you would have seen the value of your gold rise by 10% but if you had chosen silver during that same period, you would be nursing a 20% loss in its value.

Between 2008 and 2011 and in part probably due to market reactions and sentiment surrounding the financial crisis, silver managed to significantly outperform gold. From 2011 onwards until mid 2014, gold has managed to outperform silver, so there are points in time where both metals have their moment in the limelight, meaning that you probably can’t take past performance in isolation as a reason for choosing one over the other.

What you can garner from looking at the past performance of gold and silver is that silver has a volatility factor that can be as much as 70% higher than gold, so an adventurous investor looking for a risk and reward play might try to pick their moment in order to benefit from the volatility in silver prices, although that is a dangerous game and could prove expensive.

Currency status

One argument that you could put forward in favor of gold over silver, is that gold enjoys status as an alternative to fiat currencies, whereas you could not argue that was the case when it comes to silver.

Industrial applications

Silver is the more widely used metal in comparison to gold, when it comes to industrial applications.

This means that if global industrial output is on the rise there would likely be a strong demand for silver which could help push prices upwards. Conversely, if we enter a period of economic downturn, demand for silver industrial usage would likely curtail and have a potentially negative effect on prices.

The case for silver

You could firstly argue that silver may well be better value in comparison to gold. Taking the price position at the beginning of 2014, it could be viewed that an ounce of gold is 61.5 times more expensive than an ounce of silver.

Silver reserves outnumber gold reserves by a factor of just over ten, so the gold/silver price ratio should be closer than it actually is. It is this pressure on prices that means a number of mining companies who are focused solely on silver production, are finding it almost impossible to turn a profit at current rates.

The positive aspect of this scenario that silver production may well fall lower if miners can’t make a profit from their operations, which means that supply pressures could help to force the price of silver up.

The other point to consider when it comes to smaller investors, is that someone could buy about 40 ounces of silver for about $1,000 in coins, whereas you can’t buy an ounce of gold for the same money. This makes silver popular amongst more modest investors and helps to maintain popularity and prices as a result.

The case for gold

Gold is popular as an investment and one of the fundamental reasons for its popularity is that investors often buy gold as a way of diversifying risk.

Gold is a physical asset and although it can rise and fall in value, it cannot go bankrupt or default on its promises or obligations, which is why that gold bullion in particular does have a history of rising in value in times of crisis.

Diversification is a good strategy to keep to in your investment portfolio and when you look at the long term performance of gold, you can find reasons why holding a percentage of gold could pay dividends over a period of time.

Precious metals like gold and silver can often act as an insurance policy against adverse stock market conditions or periods of uncertainty in the world and central banks are continuing to buy gold, which could be viewed as a strategy to follow or at least indicates that demand for gold will potentially push prices up and silver may well follow suit.

As you can make a case for investing in both gold and silver, some investors choose to gain an exposure of between 3% and 5% of their total investment portfolio and how you split those percentages between gold and silver probably depends on your views on the stock market and industrial growth.

 

History of Gold

Gold has been a fundamental part of human history and is seemingly deeply ingrained in our culture.

When you look at the history of gold you can go as far back as 564 BC when King Croesus found the the right refining techniques to mint the world’s first standardized gold currency. The precious metal has even been used in outer space, when the first manned space flight in 1961 used gold to protect sensitive instruments from radiation damage.

From the early coins known as Croesids (after King Croesus) which became universally accepted and traded with confidence, gold has continued throughout history to be a recognized form of currency.

One of the earliest forms of jewelry can be traced back to 2600 BC, when the goldsmiths of Mesopotamia crafted a burial headdress which had willow leaf-shaped gold pendants. One thousand years later and the Egyptian goldsmiths carried out the first smelting of gold, although a much earlier example of fine craftsmanship was achieved when the iconic funeral mask for Tutankhamun was created in 1223 BC.

It was in 1300 that the world’s first hallmarking system was introduced at Goldsmith’s Hall in London and in fact, where the London Assay office is still situated. Seventy years later, we witnessed what is known as the Great Bullion Famine, where various major mines exhausted supplies and mining and production of gold decline sharply, created a major shortage of supply.

California witnessed a gold rush in 1848 after John Marshall discovered gold flakes at this sawmill near Sacramento, resulting in about 40,000 diggers converging on the area to try and strike gold for themselves.

Just 37 years later in 1885, the South African gold rush begun after an Australian miner called George Harrison fund gold ore near Johannesburg. The country is the source of about 40% of the world’s gold.

Gold bullion has always played a pivotal role in economic policy and in the past we have had the Gold Standard, which linked the currencies of many major countries to gold. The Gold Standard was abandoned as President Nixon introduced the Bretton Woods System which is a system of floating exchange rates, still used by markets today.

This has not deterred investors from gold in any way and the Central Bank Gold Agreement signed in 1999 confirmed this, when 15 European Central Banks declared that gold would remain an important element of their reserves.

Significance of the Gold Bullion Act of 1985

The relevance of the Gold Bullion Act 1985 is that it proved to be the catalyst for making the American Eagle gold bullion coin amongst the most popular of all the coins available in the United States.

Congress enacted the Gold Bullion Act of 1985 as a result of an idea presented to President Ronald Reagan’s Gold Commission a few years earlier, in 1981.

Congressman Ron Paul suggested the Act should stipulate that the gold to be used for producing the proposed American Eagle coin should only be sourced from newly mined resources.

As a result of the introduction of the Act in 1985, the American Eagle coin went on to establish itself as one of the leading gold coins in the United States and also the rest of the world.

In excess of 13 million coins of these distinctive one-ounce coins have been minted and distributed to investors and collectors since the 1985 Act was passed.

It is interesting to note the rise and fall in demand for the coin when viewed in connection with the global financial crisis in 2008. In the year preceding the turmoil experienced in financial markets,the U.S Mint produced just over 140,000 one-ounce coins throughout the whole of 2007.

Compare that to the 710,000 coins it produced in 2008 to try and keep up with demand from investors and you get a sense of how many view gold as a hedge against stock market turbulence.

The American Eagle coins introduced as a result of the Gold Bullion Act of 1985 are legal tender and the coins are minted in one-ounce, half-ounce, quarter-ounce and tenth-ounce sizes.

The coins are produced at the West Point Mint in the U.S and each one is an alloyed coin at 22 karats or .916 fine. President Reagan was the man responsible for ensuring that so many investors in the U.S and around the globe continue to acquire these coins after the Gold Bullion Act of 1985 became law.

Gold History: World War I and World War II

War has an understandably profound effect on our global economy and the fiscal and monetary effects of war are often far reaching, a fact that can be demonstrated when you look at the history of gold Creative_Wallpaper_The_Second_World_War_018246_-1024x640prices in conjunction with major events like a world war.

Financial barometer

Financial markets are always going to be susceptible to bad news and concerns but it is interesting to note that war tends to lead to a specific type of inflation which is caused by expectation rather than actual changes.

This type of inflationary pressure occurs when prices begin to rise not because of physical changes in the level of supply and demand but are more driven by the fear of the changes that might happen as a result of a traumatic event like a world war.

The start of World War 1 also marked the end of the gold standard, which is a major part of economic history in general and a fundamental part of how we view gold and its value to us and the economy in general.

The Gold Standard

Some financial analysts are of the opinion that the world gold standard of the late 19th century was as close to a perfect monetary system as you are likely to ever see.

Running from about 1870 through to 1914, this period of time in our economic history was considered to be the best period for the gold standard since its introduction in 1819. The gold standard was the term used to describe a commitment by participating countries to set the prices of their domestic currencies in comparison to a specific amount of gold.

It was Sir Isaac Newton, who was the master of the mint in 1717, who overvalued the guinea in terms of silver and this led to a de facto gold standard being adopted in England. It wasn’t until 1819 that England then chose to formally adopt the gold standard, and the United States, which was already operating a formal bimetallic standard (gold and silver) by then, switched to a gold de facto agreement until Congress passed the Gold Standard Act in 1834.

When the gold standard was formally introduced into legislation, the price of gold was fixed at $20.67 per ounce, which is the price it remained at until 1933.

Other major developed countries subsequently adopted the gold standard in the 1870’s and this period in economic history between 1880 to the start of World War 1, is generally known as the classical gold standard.

This period of time witnessed unprecedented economic growth and an explosion in free trade in goods, labor and capital and to a large extent, most of the participating countries adhered to the gold standard during this time.

How the gold standard was used

The gold standard was utilised as a domestic standard to regulate the quantity and growth rate of each country’s money supply.

It worked on the basis that any new production of gold would add only a small amount to a country’s accumulated stock and due to the fact that the authorities agreed to guarantee the option to convert gold into non-gold money free of charge, this allowed the gold standard to help ensure that money supply and prices would not suffer from much volatility as a result of this agreement.

The idea worked in principle, but sudden surges in the level of world gold stocks caused by events such as major gold discoveries in Australia and California in the 1850’s, had a destabilising effect on price levels in the short term.

The gold standard also played a pivotal role in serving as an international standard to determine the value of a country’s currency in relation to the currencies of other countries.

This worked because the participating countries who adhered to the gold standard agreed to maintain a fixed price for gold, allowing rates of exchange to be fixed accordingly. As a result of this agreement to fix exchange rates, the gold standard had the effect of causing price levels around the world to move together.

In order for the gold standard to work in the way it was intended, it relied on the participating countries honoring the equivalent of a gentleman’s agreement and to abide by the rules of the game.This mean that if a country was running a balance-of-payments deficit, it was obliged to permit an outflow of gold until parity to the agreed par exchange rate had been restored.

The demise of the gold standard

The gold standard is no longer used by any government, although some financial experts consider that the appeal of the system is still very strong, despite some of the limitations and lack of flexibility that it offers in certain conditions.

Britain abandoned the gold standard completely in 1931 and the U.S followed suit in 1971. The replacement for the gold standard is fiat money, which is the term used to describe currency used as a result of a government order.

The price of gold today is determined solely by the demand for the metal but despite the fact that it is no longer operating as an international standard, it still has an important role to play in world economics.

Gold is utilised as a major financial asset for not just countries but central banks too. It also used by banks as a method of hedging against loans made to their government.

The effect of war on gold prices

ww1-numbers

It is interesting to note that the UK economy actually grew by about 7% between 1914 to 1918 despite World War 1 and the fact that so many men were absent and serving their country. The German economy actually shrank by 27% in the same period and the war saw an understandable decline in civilian consumption.

By the time we reached 1916, Britain was taking responsibility for funding not just their own war expenditure, but they were also meeting all of Italy’s costs plus two thirds of the war costs incurred by France and Russia.

As a result of this, gold reserves as well as overseas investments and the flow of private credit all just ran out, forcing Britain to go cap in hand to America and borrow $4 billion from the U.S Treasury.

The effect of the Nazi attack on the Low Countries and the subsequent fall of France meant that World War 2 created a sharp increase in the rate of flow of gold to the United States, which was being used in order to provide payment for war materials.

Britain paid for its war purchases by transferring in excess of $2 billion worth of gold to the U.S as well as drawing down British dollar balances by $235 million and also selling $335 million of U.S securities.

A Lend-Lease agreement was struck under which at least $50 billion was spent by the time we reached the end of the war. Within a very short period after the enactment of the Lend-Lease, there was a noticeable and rapid rise in gold stock, covering a period between 1938 and accelerating after the fall of France came to an end.

world-war-ii-banner

he Second World War witnessed predictable turbulence in economic conditions and despite the financial pressures of rebuilding Europe and Japan as well as further major conflicts in the form of the Korean War and the Vietnam War, the price of gold performed remarkably well given the circumstances.

The price of gold managed to remain around $35 per ounce between the recovery of the price after the Great Depression through to 1967. In the early 1930’s, the United States and France in particular, begun a deliberate policy of devaluing their currencies in what turned out be a futile attempt to rescue their collapsing exports.

In 1933, President Roosevelt, made a decision to issue a ban on any buying or selling of gold bullion in the U.S, which had the effect of increasing the price of gold by 65% in the same year. When he subsequently officially devalued the dollar in 1934, this caused the price of gold to soar in this two-year period, from the historically stable level of $20.60 per ounce to $34.70 in 1934.

War and conflict continues to have a major impact on gold prices and perceived values. You only have to look at the impact of recent events in Iraq and Afghanistan, combined with the terrible events of 9/11, to see how markets and gold prices react.

The continuing belief that gold is a safe-haven in times of trouble or unrest, is probably borne out by the fact that gold prices rose from a low of $278 to $1,200 in the ensuing time period. The actual amount of gold in circulation could also increase if some of the myths and legends surrounding this precious metal turn out to be true.

Nazi gold

1297452__436546cThere are many myths and legends surrounding gold and one of the more famous stories is about the Nazi Gold that is reputed to be worth about £1 billion and was according to legend, dumped in a lake close to Berlin, in the final days of the Second World War.

It is believed that about 18 crates of gold may be lying on the bed of a 988 acre stretch of water known as the Stolpsee. The gold was allegedly dropped into the lake on the orders of Hermann Goering just before the Red Army made its final push into Berlin in 1945.

According to an eyewitness, he saw around 30 concentration camp prisoners unloading the crates before being shot and killed to ensure their silence, once they returned to shore. many attempts to find the gold have been in vain so far, and in the 1980’s the German Secret Police used combat divers to search for the gold.

Many have tried and failed so far and in 2013, the German Authorities gave permission for an explorer to use sonar and radar equipment to try and track the gold. Maybe one day, the story of Nazi Gold will become a matter of fact rather than speculation.

Schachtanlage_Merkers-1024x809

                                                Nazi gold stored in Merkers Salt Mine

 

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Source : alternativeinvestmentcoach.com

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The post The Ultimate Guide to Gold as an Investment appeared first on Backdoor Prepper.

3 Signs The Economic Crash Will Hit Us In 2016

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Economic crash

Never before in the history of the United States have so many top authorities agreed on one thing: the end of the US Dollar is almost here, and a global economic crisis will start in 2016.

This is very, very clear.

“Cash is trash.” – Robert Kiyosaki

“Dollar is going down.” – Donald Trump

“A U.S. financial crisis—greater than the crisis of 2008—is fast approaching… and this crisis will be very different from the last one.” – Ron Paul

“The Dollar As We Know It Will Be Gone Within 6 Years.” – Mike Maloney

“The American people have no idea they are paying the bill.” – G. Edward Griffin

And if you hold your wealth in banks, personal real estate or stocks, you need to stop what you are doing. Listen to what I am going to say, and pay very close attention, or when the economic crisis hits, you will be the one footing the bill, losing a majority of your savings, and working many years after you had planned to.

You see, in an extremely rare culmination of events, 3 key indicators all point at one conclusion: there will be a crash in 2016. And if it’s as big as some of these folks say it’s going to be, the US government will be coming after all of your civil liberties: your livelihood, your guns, and possibly your very freedom. The government will come after your livelihood to pay their debts, your guns so you can’t protect yourself, and your liberty if you object to the first two.

And I know, it seems too crazy to be true, but as you will see in just a minute, that is also part of their plan. I founded my company in 2010, when it became abundantly clear to me that the reason the economy got smashed in 2008, was going to happen again – and this next time was going to be ten times worse. But luckily for some of us, there is a way out. If, and only if you take the necessary steps now to avoid what they have in store for you.

So who is “they”? Sounds dubious, doesn’t it? Well, it’s not. “They” are the big bankers and corrupt politicians that continue to steal from the hard working population in order to line their own pockets and bail out their buddies, while the middle class and little guys suffer. They are the IMF. They are the Federal Reserve. They are Wall Street. They are Politicians. And according to many credible sources, they will be the ones that walk away from the next big crash unscathed, while folks like us suffer.

How Do You Know What’s Coming?

There are three things that need to be revealed to you, in plain and simple terms:

  1. How the 2016 economic crisis, will go down, according to many authorities, who have been correct on the matter a number of times;
  2. What traps the government have already put in place to take what’s left of your civil liberties, including confiscation of the majority of your wealth; and
  3. How you can take simple and inexpensive steps to protect your wealth by getting it beyond the desperate clutches of a broke government.

But first, I want to reveal the 3 major economic indicators that our economy is past due for collapse:

  1. The 7 Year Economic Crash Cycle has expired;
  2. The Presidential Hand Off is about to take place; and
  3. We’ve Reached a Critical Mass of Printing Money.

There is a theory called the “7 Year Cycle” which pretty accurately predicts that every 7 years or so, the stock market crashes. This trend started in 1966, with a serious credit crunch and liquidity crisis. 7 Years later, in 1973 marked the oil embargo crisis, and oil prices skyrocketed. In 1980, banks and brokerage houses nearly avoided a collapse by a last minute change to margin calls on shorting commodities. Interest rates topped at 22%.

And in 1987, the Dow lost 22% in one day. Seven years later, in 1994, the bond market crashed. And in 2001 (7 more years), Wall Street was hit hard after the attacks of 9/11. You remember what happened in 2008.

So why didn’t we see a crash in 2015? We should of, and I will tell you why we haven’t yet in just a minute. But just so you know, this “7 year cycle” crash could hit any day. The storm that is brewing is heightened by the fact that 2016 is an election year, so the “blame” can be pawned off on the candidate who’s time is finished (Obama) while the “New Hope” for our nation is being revealed.

And who will that be? The two front runners for the Democratic party are equally terrifying. Hillary because she is majorly in the big banks’ pockets, and Bernie because he is a self-proclaimed socialist. And the votes are already bought and paid for. Because there are so many people relying on the government for support, or to get their illegal family members into the country legally, that the nation has become Socialist and the Democratic Candidate is very likely to win.

And do you know what that will do to the stock market? Hint: its bad! Or the price of gold? Hint: It’s good if you know where to buy and hold your gold, which 87% of people do not.

The only reason the seven year cycle didn’t hit in 2015 is that we are printing money at proportions greater than ever. The federal reserve has increased the money supply through “Quantitative Easing” and buying and holding crap bonds. And the United States national debt has nearly quadrupled since 2001, from 5 trillion to over 18 trillion. Make no mistake. The “QE” program and printing is the only reason we have not been hit with the biggest economic crash that anyone can remember. But don’t be lulled into a false sense of security, because it’s coming.

If this is shocking or hard for you to believe, please know that you are not alone. And it’s not your fault. It’s a very common and natural thing to believe that everything is fine, and is going to be okay. It’s so common that they even have a clinical phrase for it. It’s called “Normalcy Bias.”

And normalcy bias affects every single one of us. Even me. It is something that you must address in yourself. It is the mental state people enter when facing a disaster. It causes people to underestimate both the possibility of a disaster and worse, the effects. Normalcy bias is the reason that any Jew remained in Germany after 1930. Or any resident of New Orleans remained in the city after the first levy broke. It is a real thing, and it paralyzes people.

I will address it during an upcoming video conference so we can know this about ourselves, and move past it to see the problem, and therefore help ourselves.

succes council1

Here Is What They Have Planned for Your Savings

While the rumblings of this economic upheaval have been set into motion since the so-called “recovery” after the last crash in 2008, the threats have never been as clear as they are today. And as we’ve learned, a number of highly respected and credible analysts have all predicted that the end of the US Dollar is here, and the crash is coming in 2016. But this time, and unlike 2008, the game is different, the players are smarter, and the stakes are so much higher.

And I hate to say it, but the traps are already set. And we are the mice. You are smart enough to know that the problems with this economy are systematic, and the solutions that worked to “fix” the problem in 2008, are no longer available to us.

What do I mean the solutions are no longer available? Well, the idea that anyone is “too big to fail” will not work in this new economy, and the Policy makers and bankers know this. They know the tax payer will no longer foot the bill for big banker’s mistakes. So what have they done? They have taken serious and decisive action to protect themselves (and not you) when their house of cards falls this next time.

And sadly, for millions of Americans, there will be no way out. I am talking about bail-in banking models, and capital controls like FACTA. And if you are thinking to yourself, “The economy is fine, we don’t have a thing to worry about.” You need to think again, and hear exactly what they are planning for you, your money, your passport, and your livelihood. This can happen in America, it has happened in America, and if you don’t do something to help yourself, it could very well happen to you.

1) Bail-In Model

First and foremost, the “Bail In” model means that the government will confiscate your savings during a crisis. If you think I am exaggerating, you only need to look back 2 years ago to what happened in a little country called Cyrpus. What’s more terrifying, is what the IMF said about Cyprus.

But if you have saving in the bank, you need to learn more about how to protect your savings. And another thing you should be asking yourself is: why they are collecting all of the new data they are collecting about your finances? Like FACTA.

2) FACTA

FACTA is a classic Big Government move: first, find out where the assets are located, so later, they can be levied. Governments do this to round up guns, money, and even food. And in 2014, the US began requiring that its citizens and even its resident aliens report all foreign accounts. Even if these accounts are 100% legal – they must all be reported so that the government knows exactly where to go to collect.

And finally, when the collapse does happen, you will see some major restraints on the movement of your money. These are called “Capital Controls.”

3) Capital Controls (Private and Public)

During Greece’s latest collapse, banks shut their doors, and ATMs were limited to a $50 per day disbursement, before many of them ran out of money. Things got pretty ugly, and turned back to a barter system–something that often happens in a collapse. And you may not know this, but we are already trained to accept capital controls from our government.

Have you ever left the country and had to tick the box on a form if you are carrying more than $10,000 across the border? That is a Capital Control. And in a collapse, that number will be reduced to less than $200. Just ask the citizens of Argentina, who experienced this in 2012. Learning how to avoid these private and government controls of your money is one thing that you really need to do before it’s too late.

Because remember: if you can’t access your money, how will you buy anything you need to survive? You won’t. Unless you take the next step and learn how this seemingly terrible situation can actually mean financial freedom for you.

I have helped thousands of people get ready for this scenario, in what I like to call a “No Risk” situation. Here’s what I mean: there are a few ways to prepare for this scenario that cost you very little, and if I am wrong, and the economy only gets better forever, you still have not lost much compared to what happens if I am right.

Look, any time you “invest” your money – there is a risk. Stocks plummet, real estate crashes, and banks refuse to hand over your money. But there is one thing that historically increases during this type of economic upheaval, and when the shit really hits the fan, this one thing will be your savior: Physical Gold and Silver.

The thing with gold and silver is this: it has value regardless of what the economy does. Since the dawn of human time, people have used these metals as jewelry, for trade, and for machinery. And unless this 2,000 year practice all of a sudden stops tomorrow, physical metals will hold much of their value.

And I wish it was as simple as telling you: “Go buy gold.” But it’s not. They have made sure of that. These folks are not stupid. And they learned their lesson last time the entire system almost came crumbling to knees. They saw how people like me, who saw the writing on the wall, made money on the crises. They know how some people are trying to subvert their efforts, and they have got almost all of their bases covered. Note: I said almost.

If you know their plan, then you can make your own. And there are ways right now to get your wealth beyond their grasp, and into an asset class that they cannot reach. And by now, I hope the problem is clear. A crash is coming in 2016, your wealth is at stake, especially if it’s held in the bank, in your personal real estate, or in your 401k. You are at risk of losing all you have worked to save, unless you learn how to preserve your savings.

You don’t have to believe me, rather, you only need to look back 8 years ago to see what happened then, and you know, this time it will be worse. These institutions have not gotten healthier or stronger. In fact, they’ve become more cancerous and pervasive. And this time, there will be no saving graces. They have made sure that you and I will be the ones left to suffer. Unless we get this insurance and protect ourselves right now.

Once the collapse comes, it will be too late, unless you act now, and that is what I am here to help you do. That is why we have just arranged for you to join us on a video conference call this week. We don’t want you to miss out on any of this life-changing information. And you won’t regret it. Click on the banner below to secure your spot now!

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This article was written as a Guest Writer for Survivopedia by Jarrod Dennis of Succes Council.

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Learn about UK Junk Silver Coins

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Some interesting info worth remembering. When it comes to British coins, Pre 1920 coins are sterling silver, meaning 92.5% silver content. From 1920 to 1946, these are known as Pre-1947, these are 50% silver.
For more information, examples and a couple other things a junk silver buyer should know, check the video below!

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

 

 

 

Prepping Tips for Millennials

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Getting prepared for a disaster ahead of time is the best decision you can make for you and your family. Whether you are going to buy gold for saving or to buy guns just in case something bad happens, you have many options to choose from. However, one of the most important things to think about is your child. If you are a millennial, you probably have a family right about now. This means that there are going to be extra lives to think about when preparing for a possible disaster.

A disaster could come in many forms. Not all of them are natural. Most of these aren’t even life-threatening in the conventional way. Instead, you are going to have to find shelter from the figurative storm that is the crumbling economy of the present day. If you have been watching the market in recent days, you know just how unstable the global market in currency is. The dollar is plummeting towards a dark pit from which there is no escape for it.

Money means nothing

If you are really concerned about the security of your finances in these troubled times, simply having a retirement plan is not going to be enough. You need to make sure that they are protected against the possible crises that could arise over time. There are so many risks when it comes to your funds. If you lose them, you lose years of hard work and savings. While it isn’t going to literally be stolen from your account, if the economy gets too bad, there is a possibility that your money will be worth nothing.

This is a very real scenario. Money is nothing but paper which the government says has a value. If the economy collapses, so will the government and that will result in you owning money that could be used as toilet paper instead. However, there is a solution out there for this problem. People seem to have forgotten that before paper money existed, metals were used with different values. One of the prime examples of this is gold.

Golden opportunity

Gold is a metal that has retained its value over the years. This hasn’t been a small amount of time either. The metal has been in demand since it was first mined and discovered. Before modern plumbing and building came into play, gold was being mined and used to create jewelry and artefacts. A good example of this is the golden calf in the Bible! It has been shown not to reduce value over time, regardless of what the current market is like. It is independent of the market and therefore the perfect investment to protect the funds in your rainy day accounts.
In the event of a complete market collapse, you would then have the precious metal in your hand. This is going to be far more beneficial to you than a wad of worthless printed paper which used to be the trendiest thing around.

The post Prepping Tips for Millennials appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Frankincense And Myrrh: Modern-Days Uses For The Wise Men’s Gifts

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Frankincense And Myrrh: Modern-Day Uses For The Wise Men's GiftsMost of us are familiar with the gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh that the wise men brought to young Jesus. However, have you ever thought about why the wise men might have brought those particular gifts in honor of Christ?

While the gift of gold was likely given to honor the divinity of Christ as Emmanuel (meaning “God with us”), there were likely physical, emotional and spiritual reasons why the wise men also brought frankincense and myrrh.

Today, we also can benefit from these oils.

Frankincense (Boswellia carterii)*

Frankincense essential oil is steam distilled from the gum resin of a tree. Traditionally, this resin was burned in religious ceremonies and was an ingredient in the holy incense burned as an offering to God. Frankincense is referenced more than 50 times in the Bible, and it was considered to be a holy oil in the Middle East.

Role of Frankincense in the Biblical Christmas Story

Frankincense And Myrrh: Modern-Day Uses For The Wise Men's Gifts

Image source: Holy Spirit Church

Because frankincense symbolized holiness and righteousness, during Biblical times, the gift of frankincense to Jesus symbolized His willingness to become a holy sacrifice for the sins of the world.

Health Benefits

Frankincense essential oil exhibits many potential health benefits for a variety of conditions, including allergies, asthma, coughs, diarrhea, headaches, scarring, ulcers, warts and wrinkles.

New “Survival Herb Bank” Gives You Access to God’s Amazing Medicine Chest

Frankincense may help to improve emotional balance, increase resistance to stress and tension, and may also help to improve one’s attitude. Frankincense also may help those with mild depression.

How to Use

Frankincense oil can be applied to the bottoms of the feet, directly applied to the area of concern, diffused in a diffuser, or taken internally as a dietary supplement (for those over the age of six years).

Sacred Frankincense (Boswellia sacra), found only in modern-day Oman, is considered by many to be the most highly valued variety of frankincense on Earth. Experts believe that this is likely the variety of frankincense that was given as a gift at Christ’s birth.

Biblical References to Frankincense

Exodus 30:34; Leviticus 2:1, 2, 15, 16; 5:11; 6:15; 24:7, Numbers 5:15; Matthew 2:11; and Revelation 18:13.

Myrrh Essential Oil (Commiphora myrrha)*

Historical Uses

In the ancient world, myrrh was highly prized as one of the most costly items in the world. Myrrh is extracted from a tree in the same fashion as frankincense. It was traditionally used as a spice, in religious rituals, for embalming applications, and for a number of health conditions such as leprosy.

The Role of Myrrh in the Christmas Story

Frankincense And Myrrh: Modern-Day Uses For The Wise Men's Gifts

Image source: Pixabay.com

In Biblical times, myrrh symbolized bitterness, suffering and affliction. As a gift for Jesus, it symbolized the fact that He would suffer greatly and would ultimately sacrifice His life to bring eternal life to a lost world.

Health Benefits

Myrrh essential oil also exhibits many potential health benefits, including for allergies (skin), athlete’s foot, chapped/cracked skin, coughs, diarrhea, eczema, stretch marks and ulcers.

Fast, All-Natural Pain Relief With No Nasty Side Effects!

Myrrh essential oil also may help to promote improvement in mood and emotions.

How to Use 

Myrrh essential oil can be applied to the bottoms of the feet or applied directly to the area of concern. It may be taken orally as a supplement by those over the age of six years, and must be used with caution if taken during pregnancy.

Biblical References to Myrrh

Genesis 37:25, 43:11; Exodus 30:23; Esther 2:12; Psalms 45:8; Proverbs 7:17; Song of Solomon 1:13, 3:6, 4:6, 4:14, 5:1, 5:15, 5:13; Matthew 2:11; Mark 15:23; John 19:39

*Some words of caution: This information is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to diagnose or treat any particular health condition. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health practitioner to determine if these or other essential oils are right for your individual health condition(s), and those of your children and loved ones.

How do you use frankincense and myrrh? Share your tips in the section below

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

Gold, And Pulling The Plug On The Fiat Petro-Dollar

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The United States has been fully off the gold standard for 44 years. Depending on where you read statistics, the average life expectancy of Fiat currencies are somewhere between 27 and 39 years. Fiat economies ALWAYS collapse. The thing is… The U.S. Dollar is on life support, and the world is about to pull the […]

7 Survival and Prepping Hacks

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The prepping population knows their stuff. Knowing your stuff is sort of the name of the game when it comes to preparing for the worst. It’s necessary to be innovative, resourceful and aware in order to be in control when life as we know it changes drastically. There are many different ways that this scenario can play out and, luckily, many prepping practices cover a lot of different possibilities. We know the basics: food storage, water, protection, shelter, etc. But what about the little tips, or prepping hacks, we’ve learned without thinking about them, little things that make prepping just a little bit easier? We all have some, and here is a list of some survival and prepping hacks I’ve come across.

1. Remember The Crisco

Crisco is an amazing and versatile product. This may not seem like a necessity to have in your storage, but there are many ways that Crisco can be used. It’s great for frying food, greasing pans, and making baked goods. It’s great for for the skin in harsh conditions, scaly skin irritants, and can prevent rashes. Other uses include keeping cockroaches away, makeshift soap, making candles, getting things out of your hair, fixing squeaky hinges, preventing diaper rash, and many others. By putting a wick in a tub of Crisco you will have a candle that will reportedly burn for 45 days. There are other alternatives for Crisco including lard or coconut oil. Crisco, however, has a longer shelf life if stored properly and combines the perks and prepping hacks of these alternatives in one product.

2. Get The Seeds

Like I said before, as preppers, we know the importance of food storage. This practice will be vitally important if we are forced to live off of what we have and aren’t able to go out and grab some groceries. It’s important to understand food longevity, creative cooking methods, and the ability to hunt. Food storage, however, shouldn’t be the only way you are preparing to eat if the worst happens. The downside to food storage is that you are forced to leave a lot behind if you are forced to relocate. The solution to this problem is one of the easiest prepping hacks: buy and store a pack of seeds. This will enable you to grow your own, fresh food source and something easy to barter with. The seeds I’d recommend because of their ease to grow are:

  • Beets
  • Radishes
  • Beans
  • Basil
  • Strawberries
  • Tomatoes

3. Don’t Forget The Medicine

Storing medicine is one of the first prepping hacks you should consider.  The uses for medicine are an obvious necessity when prepping. It’s extremely important to have a stockpile of medicine that you need for your own specialized medical issues like insulin, inhalers or any other life-saving medication you need. This approach can be tricky for some types of medicine as some prescriptions are quite hard to refill before you’ve finished the amount you were prescribed. Some other types of medicine that are important to keep on hand are pain relievers, antidiarrheal medicines, orajel, amoxicillin, antacids, rubbing alcohol, and antibiotic ointment. Wound dressing is important as well so be sure to remember gauze. Infection can be an overlooked issue with prepping but can easily cause limb loss or death if not treated properly.

4. Bring The Baby Oil

Baby oil is another product that is easily overlooked but can be useful in a survival situation. In cold areas where you are outside in the elements a lot, baby oil can protect your exposed skin from dry or frostbitten skin. The risk for frostbite is highest for people who have reduced blood circulation. It is important for frostbite affected tissue to be removed immediately or gangrene and infection will take hold. Without the proper medication infection can cause death.  Baby oil will not completely eliminate the risk of frostbite, of course, but it will help delay the effects and is one of the easiest prepping hacks to follow.

5. It’s All About The Silver

There are many different types of disaster that can happen at any moment and an economic collapse is one of those possibilities. If it ends up that the dollar no longer means anything in our society we will have to revert back to a monetary system that was in place before paper money was in place as a sort of IOU for the gold and silver it was supposed to represent. Like gold, silver can be used as a hedge against inflation, deflation or currency debasement.

6. The Multi-Purpose Pad

The pad, primarily used for feminine hygiene, is an extremely versatile tool and prepping hack. Along with compiling stockpiles of food, water, and other important supplies, pick up a package of pads for your survival stash. Pads can be used for absorbing lighter fluid to be used later and is extremely light to carry. The cotton material inside the pad can be used for water filtration or creating a wick. You can use it to stop bleeding if you have a wound or to clean a wound. They can be used with string to create a mask, shoe insoles, or an ice pack.

7. Creative Uses For Condoms

Condoms are another cheap and easy to carry item that will be great in a survival situation. Aside for their intended purpose, these great prepping hacks can hold a gallon of water which can be a lot easier than toting around a water jug to do the same. However, once you fill a condom up with water they become highly susceptible to puncture even by small or blunt objects. I’d recommend keeping them around just in case, but not as your main means for keeping water. They are also great for keeping things dry like kindling or matches. The down side to using condoms for water or keeping things dry is the lubricant on the outside, but it’s a small price to pay as an easy substitution for a water jug in a pinch or a way to keep life-saving matches dry.

Survival and Prepping Hacks Wrap Up

Whether your prepping stash includes a giant storage warehouse filled with all of the necessary belongings needed in case disaster strikes or just a small tote filled with a few necessities, hopefully you discovered a few extra hacks to think about in the case of emergency. What unique prepping or survival hacks have you discovered?

prepping hacks

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Guest Poster: Chelsy Ranard on twitter
Guest Poster: Chelsy Ranard
Chelsy is a writer from Montana who now lives in Boise, Idaho. She graduated with her journalism degree from the University of Montana in 2012. She worked seasonally in Ketchikan, Alaska for five years where she learned vital survival skills, a love for fly fishing, and a newfound respect for the rain.

RE: Economy Watch with Bayou Rennaisance Man AKA What To Do With Money Today?

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In Economics Watch our friend Peter talked about some applicable news and his current actions. In many ways it is a lot like my post a month or so back. In order of Peters comments:

-The housing market. Well this depends a lot on how you look at it. As an investment I would say there is considerable risk. As a way to meet your basic needs for housing well that is another discussion. If I was able to pay outright for a small cabin or cottage on a little bit of land that would be high on my list of things to do. I would rather have a cabin on a couple acres than live in a rental place and have 50 or 100k in the bank.

-Peter put his retirement funds into cash. I think the need for this extreme principle protection (At least as cash, now of course big mac’s might cost $100 but there is risk in everything) may make sense if you are closer to the age where you will be using those funds. If you are younger I am less sure that trying to time the market then catch the knife is a sound move vs just riding the wave. You will have to make your own decisions.

-Precious metals and cash on hand are both pretty common sense measures.

-Storage of precious metals at an outside non bank vault certainly has potential. I would have to look into it some more.

Also of course as River Rider mentioned in my previous post buying those big ticket items you have been putting off, replacing tires on the family hauler before they are totally worn out, etc are good ideas.

Thoughts?

Foundational Precious Metals Post 2 of 2

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