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  1. #1
    Expert mikefraz's Avatar
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    Whatís a good amount to have?

    Iím finally at the stage where Iíd like to start buying some silver and other metals in the near future for an alternate form of currency as well as just diversifying my investment portfolio. Iím happy with my contributions to my 401k. What is a good amount value wise to have on hand? Silver is pretty cheap right now, but do I need $1,000 worth? Is there a magic baseline that is generally accepted as have atleast X amount of silver, Y amount of gold, and Z amount of copper(or platinum or whatever)? I understand that your baseline greatly depends on your available capital, but Iím hoping you guys can point me in the right direction.

  2. #2
    Grandmaster actaeon277's Avatar

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    Bullets and food might be better currency.
    "Una salus victis nullam sperare salutem."

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  3. #3
    Grandmaster Leadeye's Avatar
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    Stuff like that will be what you will need to deal on the black market to get things you need, but like Act posted, it's better to already have those things. Look at the precious metals as an insurance plan for things you forgot, or to deal with unforeseen problems.

    I'll trade my ability to make booze and raise tobacco to cover those squares, there's always going to be a need for those.
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  4. #4
    Expert mikefraz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by actaeon277 View Post
    Bullets and food might be better currency.

    Iím doing pretty well on both of those fronts. Thatís why Iím branching out.

  5. #5
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    From a portfolio standpoint 5% or less in commodities would be a prudent amount.

  6. #6
    DCR
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    I've thought of this as well, but am not certain it's going to be spendable currency. Wouldn't it matter what the scenario was? If not widespread, couldn't you just drive to where $$ would be perfectly acceptable? Would it be better to just protect your portfolio with gold rather than buying coins for currency? Wife and I have discussed and we're pretty certain in some scenarios a couple shotguns are what we're most in need of. In other scenarios all we'd need is enough gas to get out of state. Planning for all contingencies is a *****.

    A 1oz gold coin is about $1500, but a 1oz silver coin is only $20, making the silver a better choice for most purchases. Keep some cash around too.

  7. #7
    DCR
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    Quote Originally Posted by OutdoorDad View Post
    From a portfolio standpoint 5% or less in commodities would be a prudent amount.
    Excellent idea. There are dozens of commodity ETFs available to do just what you need.

  8. #8
    Master Lex Concord's Avatar
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    While, speaking generally, a certain percentage of one's portfolio in PMs of some form is not a bad recommendation, commodity ETFs can't be considered "on hand", as the OP indicated. It seems to me he's thinking direct exchange medium at some level of SHTF.

    As the possibilities are endless (just pick up a few prepper novels to see just how wild the imagination can run with such a thread), the only advice that seems prudent to me is to imagine what scenario requiring PMs seems plausible and what type, form, and overall value would you feel comfortable with having in such a situation and target accumulation to that goal. Again, the possibilities are endless, but try to maintain a balance with enjoying life right now.

    Regardless of the overall amount or value, one thing to consider is the acceptability of your PMs as "currency" in whatever situation you envision. That is to say, how likely are average people (say, folks not capable of performing an acid test) to accept your items at face value? The more well known minted items such as American Eagles, Maple Leafs, or even "junk silver" (U.S. dimes, quarters, halves, and dollar coins from 1964 or before) are fairly well known, have broad recognition, and will likely engender trust more easily in such a situation than a commemorative round from a relatively unknown source.

    If you're not already familiar, I would suggest looking around at APMEX for ideas on what best fits the scenario(s) you might have in mind, not necessarily due to prices (which follow spot + some amount), but because they have an incredibly wide array of options from kilo gold bars to .5 gram marked gold beads intended for threading onto a necklace (concealed carry?) to junk silver by the bag, loose jewelry silver, and of course a plethora of rounds in gold, silver, platinum, and palladium.
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  9. #9
    Sharpshooter
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    I travel a lot for work and I have thought about this as well. Looking at having a certain amount of silver with me so that I could use it to help me get home if shtf while I am away. Tough thing to figure out it is all subjective for certain.

  10. #10
    Master spencer rifle's Avatar
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    Junk silver is worthy of consideration. It has actual monetary value, plus PM value, is widely recognized as LC said, can be obtained locally. Just go in armed with spot prices and your percentage knowledge.

    Sterling silverware is also good - again, widely recognized, has PM value, and is healthier to eat off of (especially in a SHTF event when cleanliness tends to fall off) due to oligodynamic effect.
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