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Investing in precious metals has become all the rage in recent years. Items ranging from gold collectibles to palladium bullion bars are in high demand. One question that’s increasingly asked, though, relates to whether buying international silver coins and bars is a smart investment.
Most silver investors – even the rookies among them – know that the federal government guarantees U.S. silver coinage. The big question rests upon whether the same is true for international items, and even if foreign silver is profitable, how do you know what you’re getting?
In the following guide, we’ll go in-depth regarding what you need to know when buying international silver coins and bars. After reading this, you’ll feel more confident when investing in foreign precious metals. The best part, though, is that you’ll be able to do so safely.
Can I Invest in Silver from Foreign Countries?
When most people think of investing in foreign currency, they typically envision something like the foreign exchange (i.e., Forex) market. The Forex market is a great place to do exactly that, but this isn’t how you would buy silver foreign currency.
If your investment strategy involves investing in international legal tender rather than silver bullion bars or foreign currencies, doing so is very simple. In fact, many countries produce coins specifically for people around the world to purchase and save.
This makes buying international silver coins a simple process. The following countries produce some of the most popular silver coinage purchased across the globe:
- Australia (i.e., Perth Mint)
Each of these nations produces several silver coins to buy, and most of them come at fair prices. If you buy Canadian Silver Maple Leafs, for instance, you’ll typically only pay a slightly higher premium than purchasing silver bars.
With international silver coins, and silver in general, keep in mind that you’ll always pay a premium over spot price. This is true for any precious metal item you purchase, but with coinage, this premium can be slightly higher. This is because coins can carry numismatic, intrinsic and face value.
If you’re more concerned with silver value rather than rarity, though, buying Mexican Silver Libertads, British silver coins and Perth Mint coins are all great choices. In fact, the value of modern silver coins from all reputable mints typically rely solely on silver content.
What to Know Before Investing
If you’re more prone to buying international silver bullion bars rather than coins, you don’t have as much to worry about with numismatic and other types of value. There’s not much a refinery can add to a one-ounce bar of silver to increase its collectability factor other than a beautiful design.
Regardless of the type of silver you’re purchasing, though, there are a few things you should keep in mind. These tidbits of knowledge will help you make wise investment choices when purchasing foreign silver.
Sometimes It’s Best to Use Storage
When you buy silver, many dealers will offer discounts for storing your bullion with them. Allocated precious metals storage can ensure that your items remain safe, accessible to you, outside of the banking system and maintain the inherent trust that comes with dealer possession.
Silver Content Can Vary in the Same Year
If you’re buying international silver coins that don’t fall into the category of non-circulating legal tender (NCLT), there’s a chance you could encounter coinage from the same year with very different precious metal contents.
The 1967 Canadian silver dime, for instance, can be 50 or 80 percent silver. How do you tell the difference? An XRF gun. Unfortunately, these guns cost over $30,000. If you want to buy silver Canadian coins – or any foreign silver coin – NCLT releases are typically your best bet.
Can I Travel Internationally With Silver Bars?
Many people question whether buying international silver bars is a smart investment after they’ve already done so. This often starts with folks visiting foreign countries and coming across a great deal in a local market, pawn shop or silver dealer.
If this describes you, there’s a good chance you found this page because you’re wondering whether you can travel internationally with silver bars. Fortunately, this is an acceptable practice. If you’re doing so, though, always follow these tips:
- Don’t place coins in checked baggage. Luggage can get lost.
- Request a screening in a private room if a TSA agent wants to inspect your bag.
- Keep your receipt on you at all times after buying international silver bullion bars.
- Keep a close eye on your bag and don’t advertise what you have.
Maybe the most important thing, however, is to fill out the appropriate forms. If your silver bars have more than $10,000 in value, you need to declare them when flying back to America. Failure to do so can result in fines that eat into your profits.
Now that you know it’s okay to travel with silver bars – and even coinage – it’s important to know that you should avoid doing so. There is currently a major problem with counterfeit silver bullion overseas, and since buying international silver in America is easy, the risk is pointless.
Things to Avoid When Buying International Silver
Purchasing silver coins, bullion bars and other items from foreign countries is a simple and safe endeavor. Unfortunately, the opposite can also be true if you’re not careful. If you’re ready to invest in international silver bullion, make sure you avoid making the following mistakes:
- Never buy silver on Wish: You’ll find an abundance of pristine silver coins on Wish.com for very low prices. Unfortunately, every single one of them is fake.
- Avoid buying on eBay: There are many reputable domestic companies that sell on eBay (typically for high markups), so avoid buying from foreign accounts. Not only are international shipments more likely to get lost, but it can take much longer to discover scams.
- Pay attention to fineness: When buying international silver coins and bars, remember that they’re not all equal. Even when items come from reputable companies, direct comparisons are difficult due to differences in fineness.
- Don’t buy from individuals: Major silver dealers – like Silver Gold Bull – have a reputation to uphold. Philip from the flea market does not. Avoiding reputable dealers to save money can become very costly.
- Avoid ancient coins: While it may seem tempting to buy ancient silver coins – both for their value and “cool factor” – doing so is a risky decision. The market is flooded with fakes currently.
Buying international silver coins and bars is a great way to invest while achieving a sense of uniqueness. After all, tons of Americans own silver U.S. coinage and bullion bars. Investing in foreign items that stand out among their contemporaries is thinking outside of the box.
And if you avoid the mistakes mentioned here, you can typically do so while earning a handsome profit.
Invest in International Silver Coins and Bars Today
Modern technology allows people to make foreign investments in stocks, currencies, businesses and much more. The only downfall of doing this is that worth remains relative. What may have the value of a nice car in one nation might only purchase a fun night out in another.
Fortunately, this isn’t the case when buying international silver coins and bars. Precious metals hold universal value, and this has made them such popular stores of value throughout history. As long as silver bullion comes from a reputable source, it holds worth no matter where you are.
At Silver Gold Bull, we’re committed to helping you invest in precious metals whether you’ve set your sights internationally or a little closer to home. Visit our Silver Products Page to see everything we offer and how we make buying international silver coins and bars a simple process.