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Guide to Bullion - History and Modern Trading | Gold Bullion Co

What is Bullion?

‘Bullion’ - an exciting word. To some it conjures up images of gold bars and great wealth other see it as a secure investment opportunity. Bullion has a cornerstone of Human civilization for centuries. Bullion undoubtedly represented an insurance policy against an uncertain future, a currency with universal value when all else fails. Bullion is the ultimate reserve.

History of Bullion

Claude de Bullion, became the French Minister of Finance in 1632 under King Louis XIII. He was an extremely rich man and so great was his cash pile, extensive property holdings and business interests that the generic term of ‘Bullion,’ emerged after his name and which came to symbolise untold wealth. Monsieur Bullion was not a popular man in France and when he died, he was obliged to be buried at night time to avoid a baying mob. Even a hundred years later his reputation for excessive wealth had not diminished and during the French Revolution his tomb was sacked and destroyed.

Gold has been traded for over two thousand years, and in particular, the Spanish traded gold and silver captured from their conquests in South America during the middle ages. So the trading of precious metals on the open market is nothing new, and now as in the past, their value is based on the purity, mass and weight of the commodities being marketed. These metals could be in the form of coins, ingots and bars.

The purity of gold is defined by using a centuries old technique of fire essay (you can see essay marks on gold and silver bars, ingots and silver objet’d’art which provide origin, date and help value the item). Today, this old methodology is combined with a modern spectroscopic instrumentation to ensure perfect accuracy. The European Union regulates the purity of gold bullion (99.5% for gold bars) and (90% for bullion coins).

The London Bullion Market

The world’s trade in bullion is based in London and their standards are considered to be the benchmark for quality and safe delivery of gold and silver bars whatever their origin. The Bullion Market is where the wholesale trading of gold and silver is undertaken. The London Bullion Market Association coordinates the activities of its members and other market participants and promotes quality standards and fineness to ensure that gold bars traded are 99.5% pure and silver is 99.9%. This regulated trading ensures that standards are maintained and fairness prevails for buyers and sellers wherever they are located.

Buying bullion as an investment

You don’t need to buy whole gold bars and ingots to be a precious metal investor. Items like gold and silver Britannia coins, gold Sovereigns, PAMP (Swiss made 100 gram gold bars), 22 carat gold Kruggerand coins, American Eagle gold coins and small Metalor silver bars and many other objects in platinum and palladium (a very fine white platinum often used in rings) can be purchased through organisations like The Gold Bullion Company in Birmingham.

Bullion is often a good hedge against currency risks, inflation worries and other geopolitical uncertainties and of course any sound investor likes to have a portfolio with a spread of investment channels.

The Gold Bullion Company, based in the heart of Birmingham’s old jewellery quarter, buys and sells gold coins, silver bullion and silver coins from many of the world's leading precious metal mints, including The Royal Mint, and overseas mints, Metalor and Umicore. We features a wide range of bullion products that can be purchased on-line from as little as under twenty pounds up to many thousands. Once an order has been placed, The Gold Bullion Company securely posts the fully insured item(s) direct to the buyer.

Reputation and trust is everything

Since the financial market crash of 2008 the banks and building societies have offered a very poor return on investments; with continuing low interest rates, many saver/investors have chosen alternative and more lucrative outlets to place their investments. One of these has been bullion.

As with any financial decision you need to be absolutely confident of the organisation in which you are planning to place an investment. Buying bullion will be for many people a first-time experience and perhaps slightly daunting but it doesn’t have to be. The Gold Bullion Company has over eight thousand five hundred customers and a 99.6% satisfied customer rating.

Buyers can purchase a gold bar for less than £100 or invest in a collection of Royal Mint Silver Coins costing several thousand pounds. As a long established family firm, the Gold Bullion Company has gained a sound reputation for honest, straightforward business dealings and prides themselves on the quality of their unbiased, pre and post sales advice. The Company’s customer care team will advise buyers on the most suitable investment product for them and every purchase made comes with a buy-back guarantee.