If you wanted to purchase bullion before the Gold and Silver ETFs existed your options were coins and bars of differing weights and various certificate programs. Pictured on your left is the American Buffalo 24-Karat 1-oz Gold coin. This program was just started in December 2005. Stop by your local coin dealer and pick up a few. Better pricing may be possible through dealers with internet channels. Below are links to 2 dealers that I have successful used in the past. The US also has the gold eagle program that was created in 1986. Many countries have gold programs – Canada has the Maple Leaf, Australia has the Koala, China has the Panda, and there are many others.
Jim Puplava, of Financial Sense Online, has an excellent set of interviews on 5 different ways to purchase gold bullion. His last interview with James Turk discusses an innovative and inexpensive way to purchase Gold.
Until your friends start bragging about how many gold coins they own, it is pretty safe to continue buying precious metals. Once it becomes part of the discussion, we are near the top.
For more information of the American Buffalo and Eagle Programs: