A great way to own gold is by owning gold coins because they're easy to value, carry and sell. If you don't want to pay retail prices, it takes making relationships with coin dealers to buy gold coins at wholesale levels. The market for gold coins is smaller than other gold markets, so you have to establish a relationship with a coin dealer so he or she can sell you coins at wholesale rates.
Look up the spot price of gold. The gold spot price is the trading price per ounce for gold. It is referred to as either London spot or New York spot. In the United States, New York spot is the price gold is typically traded. You can find current rates at websites such as kitco.com.
Identify dealers. To buy gold coins wholesale, you have to identify dealers who sell wholesale to the public. Most local coin dealers will be able to sell bullion gold coins at low markup prices and they can be easily found using online directories. This can be found in the online American Numismatic Association directory. Another is the Professional Numismatists Guild. There are no guides of wholesale coin dealers, but rather, one needs to make relationships with individual dealers to get wholesale prices, as all dealers will quote retail prices until they have a relationship with you. There is no gold-buying guide that lists wholesale dealers because wholesale dealers prefer to work with other dealers rather than members of the coin-buying public.
Ask the dealer what he or she would pay for the coin. Gold coins typically have tight spreads, meaning that the buy price and sell price are similar. If a dealer's buy price is substantially lower than his or her sell price, you may be well-advised to move on. Ask the dealer if this is the dealer's best price, and ask what the price would be at the wholesale level. Do this with several dealers, being specific about what coin you have, so that there is no misunderstandings. Being specific is especially important with online dealers.
Compare with online firms and negotiate. Using the "buy it now" feature of popular Internet auction sites can show you the retail market for a coin. A wholesale price should be less than the "buy it now" price for similar coins. Ultimately, with all of these prices and the spot price of gold, you will have the tools you need to determine the retail market and what a dealer will pay for a coin. The wholesale level will be between these.
Remember that dealers often give cash discounts to avoid paying charges on credit card transactions.
Tips and warnings
- Remember that dealers often give cash discounts to avoid paying charges on credit card transactions.