Gold and Precious Metals
The hype surrounding gold, silver and other precious metals continues despite both the fact that these investments are just as vulnerable to risk as others, and signs that some precious metal markets are declining or increasingly turbulent. The promise of continuing increases in value pitched by high-profile celebrities on television, radio or the Internet too often lure unsuspecting investors into any number of scams.
Often, scams begin with an unsolicited communication such as an email or telephone call offering to sell investors gold coins, bullion, bars or other forms of the precious metal that the promoter will hold in safekeeping for the investor. Far too often, the gold simply does not exist. Increases in the value of precious metals during the recession have led unwary consumers to believe that the value will perpetually increase. Like any risky investment, there are no guarantees. In fact, gold declined by 15 percent between March and June of 2012 (a drop in value of more than $200 per ounce), settling at its lowest point since July of 2011.