Are you looking to invest in gold coins with your Individual Retirement Account (IRA)? Gold has always been valued for its investment potential, and adding it to your IRA can be a great way to diversify and protect your retirement portfolio.
But how do you know which gold coins are eligible under the terms of an IRA account?
IRA eligible gold coins are non-collectible coins that are at least 99.5% pure, and are produced by an accredited facility or national government mint. Proof coins must be encapsulated in their original packaging and in mint condition with a certificate of authenticity, while non-proof coins are acceptable only if they’re in brilliant-level condition, free from damage and uncirculated.
In this post, we will take an in-depth look at all things related to investing in IRA eligible gold coins so that you can make informed decisions about adding them as part of your retirement plans.
Before you begin the process, it’s essential to understand what IRA-eligible gold is and how you can invest in it.
What is a Gold IRA?
A gold IRA works like a standard IRA but allows you to hold gold in your retirement account.
The term gold IRA refers to a specialized individual retirement account (IRA) that allows investors to hold gold as a qualified retirement investment. Investors with gold IRAs can hold physical metals such as bullion or coins, as well as precious metals-related securities within the portfolio.
A gold IRA must be held separately from a traditional retirement account, although rules involving things like contribution limits and distributions remain the same. Investors can open gold IRAs through a broker-dealer or other custodian.
Here is a brief summary of everything you need to know:
- A gold IRA is a special type of retirement account that allows investors to hold gold coins or bullion as a qualified retirement investment.
- The IRS has certain specifications that the gold must meet in order to be considered IRA eligible gold.
- The IRS standards for IRA eligible gold include specifications on fineness, purity and accreditation as well as the exclusion of collectible coins (with a few exceptions).
- Eligible coins include 1, 1/2, 1/4 or 1/10 ounce U.S. gold coins along with a select list of eligible foreign coins that meet the standards
- Common coins that are gold IRA eligible include American Gold Eagles, American Buffalos, Australian Gold Nuggets, Austrian Philharmonics and Canadian Gold Maple Leafs.
History of IRA Rules
The IRA rules for eligible gold are ever-evolving.
IRAs were once limited to holding American Eagle gold and silver coins, but with the passage of the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, investors have been able to venture further into precious metals investments with their IRAs. Today’s IRA holders can now also put their money in IRS-approved bullion and other coinage.
Gold allowed in IRAs include 1, 1/2, 1/4 or 1/10 ounce U.S. gold coins along with a select list of eligible foreign coins that meet the minimum fineness requirements and other standards.
IRA Eligibility Rules for Gold
IRA-eligible gold is gold that meets the standards the IRS set forward for gold to be eligible for holding in a self-directed IRA. Outside of an IRA as a private consumer, you can privately buy any kind of legal gold as a private consumer. Gold that’s purchased as part of a precious metals IRA, however, must meet detailed standards.
The IRS standards for IRA eligible gold include specifications on fineness, purity and accreditation.
These rules exist in part due to the fact that U.S. laws specify that an IRA cannot hold collectibles, though there are exceptions. Since gold and other precious metals are considered collectibles, that puts restrictions on which types can be included.
The following is a full list of the requirements to be considered IRA eligible gold.
IRA Eligible Gold Rules
|Type of Gold||Minimum Purity||Requirements|
|Gold Coins||99.5%||Must be produced by an accredited/certified refiner, assayer, manufacturer or national government mint. |
Proof coins must be encapsulated in their original packaging and in mint condition with a certificate of authenticity.
Non-proof coins are acceptable only if they're in brilliant-level condition, free from damage and uncirculated.
Most collectible, numismatic coins are excluded from eligibility.
|Bars and Rounds||99.5%||Must be produced by an accredited/certified refiner, assayer, manufacturer or national government mint. |
Small bullion bars must meet particular manufacturing specifications in terms of their physical weight.
IRA Eligible Gold Coins
There are numerous options when it comes to adding IRA eligible gold coins to your IRA account. These include, but are not limited to:
- American Gold Eagle coins (including proof coins)
- Australian Gold Nugget (Australian Kangaroo) coins
- Australian Lunar Series gold coins
- Austrian Philharmonic coins
- British Britannia coins (2013 and newer)
- Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coins
- Chinese Gold Panda coins
- American Buffalo gold coins
- Other gold coins that meet the minimum fineness requirements
For a list of our best gold coins to buy, click here.
Other IRA Eligible Gold Products
Other IRA-eligible gold products include but are not limited to:
- Royal Canadian Mint gold bars (1 oz)
- Johnson Matthey gold bars (1 oz)
- Sunshine Mint gold bars (1 oz)
- UBS gold bars (1 oz)
- Valcambi Gold Bars (1 oz)
- Credit Suisse gold bars (1 oz, 10 oz)
- Valcambi Gold CombiBars (50 g)
IRA Ineligible Gold Coins
IRA-ineligible gold products include but are not limited to:
- Most collectible and rare coins
- British Brittania (pre-2013)
- South African Krugerrand
- British Sovereign
- U.S. Liberty gold coins
- French Franc
- Swiss Franc
Other Things to Keep in Mind When Investing in IRA Eligible Gold
- Exceptions exist. The American Gold Eagle coin is a notable IRS exception to the minimum fineness requirements set forth by the IRS, in part due to its popularity amongst gold IRA holders.
- Certain coins may be ineligible. Just because a coin adheres to IRS purity standards doesn’t mean it will be an eligible coin. Certain coins are deemed to be collectibles and are therefore ineligible for a gold IRA. Notable examples include U.S. Liberty and British Sovereign gold coins.
- Gold IRAs are subject to specific regulations. Beyond IRS purity requirements for the gold you gold, your gold IRA must adhere to a number of other regulations. For example, you must appoint an IRS-approved custodian and store all gold in an IRS-approved depository. Speak with your trusted gold IRA dealer for more information.
- Gold IRA companies can assist you with the process. From appointing a trusted custodian to arranging the storage of your gold coins or bars, a gold IRA company can help you adhere to all the regulations when setting up your gold IRA. Just keep in mind there are commonly minimum investment requirements as well as additional costs involved in the transportation, setup, and storage.
- Be aware of early withdrawal penalties. Be aware that the early withdrawal of gold from your gold IRA will result in an additional 10% tax penalty from the government. When setting up a gold IRA, ensure you are prepared to hold until retirement.
Tax Benefits of Gold IRA
You can certainly invest in gold without opening a gold IRA, but you’d be doing so without the tax benefits.
Investment in gold via a gold IRA makes it easy to receive the tax benefits of an IRA but with precious metals, allowing you tax-deferred growth on your earnings and tax-deductible contributions.
On the other hand, a Roth gold IRA allows your investments to compound tax free and also allows for the tax-free withdrawal of your capital in retirement.
Speak to your chosen gold IRA company to discuss the benefits of each type of IRA account.
Frequently Asked Questions About IRA Eligible Gold
Can I have gold coins in my IRA?
You can certainly have gold coins in your IRA by using a gold IRA. IRAs have come a long way since only American Eagle gold and silver coins were permitted — now you can also legally invest in IRS-approved precious metals such as palladium and platinum bullion as part of your gold IRA.
How do I buy gold coins with an IRA?
You can buy gold coins with a gold IRA but you need to keep certain requirements in mind to ensure you’re purchasing IRA eligible gold. The gold must have a minimum fineness of 99.5% and adhere to a list of other requirements set by the IRS.
Investors looking to add gold, coins or bullion to their IRA also need a self-directed custodian because IRS regulations mandate that the metals be in possession of this custodian. It’s not permitted to use your own finances from within an IRA account to purchase these precious assets then store them at home. Instead, use a gold IRA company to help you with compliance.
Can you buy gold with a traditional IRA?
You can invest in a variety of gold assets with a traditional IRA such as gold mining stocks and gold exchange-traded funds (ETFs), though you are restricted from buying physical gold. If you wish to invest in physical gold with your IRA, you can convert it to a gold IRA. A gold IRA is a specialized type of self-directed individual retirement account (IRA) that allows a custodian to store gold on the account owner’s behalf as a retirement investment.
Which gold IRA is best?
The best gold IRA depends on the individual investor’s needs and goals, but one to consider is Augusta Precious Metals. Factors to consider include which custodian offers the most competitive fees and what types of gold coins or bars are available for purchase. Additionally, investors should make sure that their chosen custodian is insured and has a track record of secure storage of precious metals.
All in all, a gold IRA can be a great way to invest your money and ensure that you have a comfortable retirement. With the recent changes in the tax laws, this option has become even more attractive to investors.
As with any investment, there are both pros and cons associated with investing in gold IRAs. It is important to do your research and consult with a financial advisor before making any decisions about investing in gold and ensure that you are only adding IRA eligible gold coins to your portfolio. But not to worry!
Have you considered investing in a gold IRA? What are your thoughts on this strategy? Leave us a comment below and let us know what you think.
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