The liberty-minded individual is turning to precious metals as a safe haven in these economically troubled times. He knows that gold has acted as a stable store of value for thousands of years while the value of world currencies has steadily declined. He understands the need to own tangible and liquid assets, even more so in an environment of ever-expanding fiat money and government debt. He has decided to partially opt-out of the current financial system by directly owning tangible wealth. This report will refer to this liberty-minded individual as the Wise Investor, who has decided to take control of his wealth.

Today’s financial system is fraught with counterparty risks, and precious metals stand out in the investment universe because they are no one’s liability and have no counterparty. Financial institutions are highly leveraged to the point that the failure of a significant player would result in a systemic collapse. The term “too big to fail” has been coined to reflect this reality. Banks are holding record amounts of derivatives products that only add to the risk of the whole system.

On top of that, major global institutions have been caught perpetrating frauds and manipulating all markets. In these days of unprecedented financial experiment, the Wise Investor has made up his mind to diversify part of his portfolio with physical precious metals.

There are many options available to the Wise Investor who wants to invest in gold. This guide reviews the various options that exist (including the ones which don’t involve ownership of bullion). The case will be made that the best way to hold bullion for wealth protection is to have legal title to bullion bars or coins either in your possession or with a trusted supplier. Because the most cited rationale for investing in precious metals is wealth preservation, it is indispensable that a precious metals investment performs that wealth preservation function in times of economic distress when counterparties collapse.

This short guide aims to lay out the options available to the liberty-minded individual who wishes to buy and hold precious metals for long-term wealth protection.