Olivier Garrett: Buying Gold & Silver

With financial markets becoming increasingly volatile (the Shanghai Composite's loss of over $2 trillion in the past month, for example), along with growing global economic instability and currency risks (Greece contagion, anyone?), we think it time to reiterate more loudly our core belief that everyone should own some precious metals.

As detailed out in our report The Screaming Fundamentals For Owning Gold & Silver, the primary reasons are:

  1. To protect purchasing power against monetary recklessness (e.g. central bank money printing)
  2. As insulation against fiscal foolishness (e.g., chronic deficit spending by governments)
  3. As insurance against the possibility of a major calamity in the banking/financial system
  4. For the embedded 'option value' that will pay out handsomely if gold is re-monetized

And while there are many ways to purchase precious metals, we continue to be impressed by the full-service set of solutions offered by the Hard Assets Alliance. Peak Prosperity joined the HAA as a founding member back in 2012, and since then, we've appreciated how well they've executed on their mission and continued to launch features targeted at what their customers value most.

In this week's podcast, Chris sits down with Olivier Garrett, the CEO of the Hard Assets Alliance to discuss the current state of the precious metals market, why the reasons for owning bullion make more sense than ever today, and what the HAA, specifically, is doing to make it as affordable, easy and secure as possible for people everywhere to own gold and silver.

The podcast gets into much more detail, but the main advantages of the Hard Assets Alliance is that it makes the same advantages enjoyed by institutions available to the retail bullion investor:

  • Excellent pricing - For every order, a least four suppliers provide a bid to meet it. The platform compares them and offers you the best one.
  • Quality of product - The HAA only offers sovereign coins and standard bullion bars, which hold their value more consistently than any other forms.  No numismatics or rare coins. You can buy gold, silver, platinum, or palladium through the HAA.
  • Delivery options - Take physical delivery immediately of your purchased bullion, or opt to have the HAA store it for you safely at low cost.
  • Allocated storage - All bullion (bars or coins) that you purchase and store through the HAA is held in your name at the vault location of your choosing. If you purchase bars, the serial numbers are provided to you. Bullion stored by the HAA is never pooled, margined, or otherwise leveraged.
  • Storage options - You can choose to have your bullion stored in vaults in the US (New York and Salt Lake City), the UK, Switzerland, Australia and/or Singapore. (Metals available at any location are subject to availability) 
  • Storage security - HAA bullion is stored in the same secure vaults as for the major global investment banks and governments that use the SmartMoney platform. These vaults have around-the-clock armed physical security, state-of-the-art electronic protection, and insurance for the full value of your deposit. Their precious metal holdings are audited every day and an audit report containing bar lists is sent to the Hard Assets Alliance daily. In addition, an internationally recognized Big Four auditing firm audits all of the precious metal holdings on a quarterly basis. Precious-metal bar holdings are confirmed with Hard Assets Alliance and reported on the Hard Assets Alliance website. 
  • Low storage fees - Between 0.5%-0.8% per year for gold and silver
  • At-will delivery - Any bullion you store with the HAA will be shipped to you, fully-insured, within 48 hours of your request.
  • Easy, anytime, instant transactions - Once your HAA account is funded, the online system lets you buy and sell bullion and/or request delivery with just a few mouse clicks. You can perform any of these transactions 24/7.
  • Reliability - Since the SmartMoney platform must meet the service requirements of the world's largest investment banks, you can have confidence that if worldwide bullion inventories become tight, the HAA will have the highest reliability that it can fulfill your order when you need to transact.
  • World-class support - In addition to the online system, live support via phone, email, and chat is available to help you 12 hours a day, 5 days a week.
  • IRS reporting - HAA accounts are considered US accounts, even if your bullion is stored in a vault overseas. Therefore you are not required to file IRS foreign-held asset reporting forms such as TD F 90-22.1.

Those interested in learning more about the Hard Assets Alliance and its solutions should click here.

Click the play button below to listen to Chris' interview with Olivier Garrett of the Hard Asset Alliance (41m:44s)

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://peakprosperity.com/olivier-garrett-buying-gold-silver/

Good program.   One comment about Olivier's mention of the difficulty of selling junk silver when the price of silver is moving quickly –  many people hold junk silver on the possibility that pre-'65 coins will again be used in face-to-face transactions, so Olivier's pov is moot in that view.  (Not that using real silver coins won't potentially have its own problems, but unfortunately all alternative monies have problems).

Can you explain the differences between the HAA and BullionVault. 
From my glance, they seem similar.  Does anyone have a feel of one being better than the other?



Hi Danroot, 

I think with both systems you have ownership of physical bullion, the difference here is that with HAA you you can have the physical bullion extracted from the vault and sent to you to keep in your own possession. With Bullionvault, I think you can't do that - you can only sell the bullion back again on their internal market, and not take physical possession of it.

Rgds, Chris

I have not listened to the podcast - waiting for the transcript.  However I am a user of Bullionvault. Yes, you can withdraw bullion if you wish not that I have. If I recall correctly you use to be only able whole "Good Delivery" bars about 12kg in weight not very practical for most people.  However you can can now also arrange for withdrawal of your holding in 100g bars if you wish. see link

Bullionvault is UK based. Looking at the members of HAA, I believe it is US based.  With both organizations, you can store your allocated gold in locations other than the USA and UK.

Otherwise I cannot comment on the differences between HAA and Bullionvault.

Rgds, Richard

Richard, thanks for the correction
Rgds, Chris

Dear Chris -

As a personal matter and based on my experience , I prefer doing business with a fee for service rather than commission based advisor. Even better, is the help of knowledgeable friends who freely share information to benefit each other.

I subscribe to your news letter, and pay for it,  because I value your point of view and the often helpful input of other Peak Prosperity subscribers.

However, using Peak Prosperity to promote a vendor, such as HAA which compensates you, causes me  concern for your independence . Many "news" sites give financial reports, then end with a sales pitch for their product(s). Often the "news" or analysis is slanted in a manner which benefits the writer's business interests. I have always felt that financial advisors who receive a commission have an inherent conflict of interest. Many business reports  and many financial advisors, from Schwab to Goldman Sachs, often have such a bias, whether it is subconscious or intentional.

 I appreciate you disclosing that you receive compensation from HAA for promoting their services,but am uncomfortable with the business model. I would rather that the subscription fee be sufficient to assure independence from promotional platforms.

This website does send mixed signals. I get mixed messages : These range from the stock market will not exist in 10 years time (this was said in a podcast a few years ago) to you should not have your allocation 100% in the stock market like it was said in this conversation another interesting line was, I have not dipped my toe in PM purchases for the last two year! Which was a surprise, considering the high emphasis on gold and silver. 
I feel that PP, has been down the path of ZeroHedge and the like, SCARE SCARE SCARE = increase page views and increase subscriptions. If PP is ringing only the negative bell, than what is the difference with CNBC ringing only the positive one ?

The effect of this is I am sure some readers have not been in the market for five years, missed the spike up and now are wondering what steps to take next. What I mean to say, is that the vision on PP has been focus on " we are .00001 second from midnight", which is not the case. No tomorrow will be another beautiful morning and the super market will still have food. I am not saying a threat is not present, but danger is not imminent. Act accordingly.

Maybe I am not the only one with this opinion : https://www.quantcast.com/peakprosperity.com?qcLocale=en_US

A recent positive report on how things could be getting better really struck a cord with me 

"Nature Rebounds" by John Mauldin: http://www.mauldineconomics.com/outsidethebox/nature-rebounds

Maybe such info has a home on PP as well, readers are looking both for opportunities to grow and for threats to protect against. 

My 2c


Zerohedge has a lot of really bad articles, but at the same time they have had some very impactful articles with deep research and insight that make that blog the favorite of most people with alternative finance interests. Also, the blog is often very witty and has good humor about some relatively depressing topics. I love that about Zerohedge
 It's good that you recognize the bias of both blogs, and the reality is that you are right, they are both selling a story/scenario. As a result, they must keep re-enforcing and producing evidence to the story, and argue that  A) the story has not changed and B) the time to take action is now because tomorrow is unpredictable. Yes, tomorrow will probably be fine, but it also may not be.

People lose interest in stories/hobbies pretty quickly, so the work that both blogs do is an uphill battle. Keeping that interest is critical in order to accomplish their mission of creating a population both informed and actionable when dealing with the future.


"People lose interest in stories/hobbies pretty quickly, so the work that both blogs do is an uphill battle. Keeping that interest is critical in order to accomplish their mission of creating a population both informed and actionable when dealing with the future."
Journalism is about a balanced story. As you confirm that this blog has a bias, and the output is a narrative which does not match with what is happening in the real world. There is not enough disclaimers in the main articles saying something to the effect of … 

This is our narrative we think A,B and Z are bound to happen. However we have been wrong the last 8 years (me included) so take this narrative (which although based on fact) might or might not hit the tarmac. It is a disservice to sell a Maserati and talk only about the second from 1 to 100 and explain nothing about it's breaking power.

Locked into fear is a marketing tactic that works for so many months or years.

How many 100 of readers have been out of the stock market since 08 because of influences from this site.

How many colleague titutions, marriage ceremonies and medical procedures have not taken place because of all the returns lost in the last 8 years … ?

IMHO, there was never an honest approach, talking about diversification. I find Jim Rickards much more genuine and honest, he does talk about ATMs and banks being closed in Western Europe at some point and on a greater scale but he also advises heavily, hey do stay in the market, your preps should be 10% of your portfolio.



Only 9 comments… did all the comments about the negative aspects of buying gold get deleted ??
For example the fact that negative effective interests rates mean it costs money to keep cash in the bank BUT that holding gold is worse.  Simply because the value of gold holdings declines due to storage costs and the decline in commodity markets - gold is only a store of wealth if you can 'swap' it for the same amount of tangible assets from one year to the next.   With all the bubbles that's just not the case right now.

Also as commented previously holding gold is great if you think the sky is going to fall but  as we have seen government autocrats are prepared to intervene to control those skies.  Gold therefore will continue to devalue while the financial system is still pegged to the USD which may never be allowed to sink - quickly.  This suggests that gold won't preserve wealth in the short term but require 10 to 30 years of patience to see it return the wealth we all think it should.  In the mean time storing it costs gold - so the gold over 30 years literally sublimes away.

On a positive note, gold does hold its value against many NON USD currencies - like YEN and AUD all be it only barely.  So as a store of wealth in those currencies it might make sense if you can avoid the storage costs which eat away at that wealth.




from http://jimrogers1.blogspot.be/  - this is what a balanced approach looks like : 
Jim Rogers : “I have explained for 5 years that I am not a buyer of gold or silver [except a few coins as gifts] since I expect a lower bottom. I own both and have not sold any, but I have hedged some.

Gold has not had a 50% correction for many years which is strange in markets. I have no idea if and when I will buy, but IF gold does have a 50% correction, it would be to US$960. There is nothing which says anything must decline 50%, but it is common. IF gold goes below US$1,000 I hope I am smart enough to buy more and close my hedges, unless something else is happening.

I have no idea what will happen: e.g. if America goes to war with Iran, I suspect I will be buying gold much higher.

There are still too many mystics in the gold market who think gold is holy so cannot decline. When/if they give up and throw their gold out the window because ‘she lied to me’, gold will make a firm bottom.

In the end gold will turn into a bubble when people lose confidence in governments and paper currency again, which will happen in the coming financial turmoil down the road.”

Go big in gold?  No.  Chris has been very levelheaded in balancing the realities of business with the analysis.   To complain about recommending 10-20 % in PM makes no sense to me.    For the stock lovers just make sure you make it out the door before it shuts.   

I've been a customer of HAA for about a year.  I like the ease of buying and the fact that the PMs are in mint condition.  And the prices seem at least as good as my local coin shop.
Only one complaint so far.  Just to make sure the shipping worked I had a small amount of silver shipped to me.  It took nine days which I thought was a bit of a long time.  But my bigger complaint is that although the box it came in had no markings on it to indicate it contained PMs, the notice I received by email from UPS said it was being shipped by Gold Bullion International.  Perhaps I'm paranoid (I am) but I'd just as soon no one at the delivery company knows that I buy PMs (nor anyone who has hacked into my mail service or internet provider).  My bank doesn't have their name on the envelope when they send me a new bank card, nor does my credit card company.

Another place one might want to consider for PM purchase/storage is Perth Mint.  It's in Australia.  You can open an IRA with them if you to through a trustee in the US.  I haven't tried delivery yet.  I like the idea of having some PMs outside of the US.