Gold - Digigold or coins?

Hi.  All of my saving investments are in cash isa form - 100K plus - in several well-know UK building societies.  I'm getting twitchy about inflation rates (I know, I know, I should have had the sense to have diversified before now, but I am where I am), and I've just started to think I need to get my savings act together.  While not wanting to appear too paranoid, I'm also thinking, "what if the IT 'apocalypse' or SHTF situation arrives and all my digital 'cash', and indeed even the real stuff in my wallet, disappears or is rendered useless?".  

It would be reassuring to have something tangible to trade/exchange, etc.  Should I invest in digigold coins (I'm thinking Royal Mint)? Or would it be better to have some actually coins stashed under-under-my-bed (obviously, not literally), which I could access even if the internet/digital world crumbles?

Thanks in advance for views and comments.
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  • eskbankereskbanker Forumite
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    Kondongo said:
    While not wanting to appear too paranoid, I'm also thinking, "what if the IT 'apocalypse' or SHTF situation arrives and all my digital 'cash', and indeed even the real stuff in my wallet, disappears or is rendered useless?".  

    It would be reassuring to have something tangible to trade/exchange, etc.
    You've failed in your attempts not to appear too paranoid!  It's usually pointed out in threads like this that having chunks of gold in apocalyptic scenarios really isn't as useful as people believe it would be, for anyone stopping to think about exactly how supply chains work, etc....
  • edited 30 December 2022 at 8:02PM
    masonicmasonic Forumite
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    edited 30 December 2022 at 8:02PM
    The priority in such a situation would be meeting your basic needs. It would therefore follow that good investments would include agricultural land, a source of clean water, preserved food, fuel, and the means to defend yourself and your property from looters.
  • Olinda99Olinda99 Forumite
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    In the worst case scenario with coins you have gold, with digigold you have numbers on a computer

    In any case a better investment last year was canned food which went up about 20% tax free

  • AdyinvestmentAdyinvestment Forumite
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    I like physical gold, although not for the SHTF reasons, I don't really see a day that people are shaving off bits of gold to pay for food etc, if that were ever a realistic scenario silver would be much better and I don't (and don't want to) see that either.

    I do however see it as a means to convert into the relevant currency to pay for things, and see it as a commodity that will keep its purchasing power far better than cash.

    There are many on here that will say not to own physical and to have an ETF, but with the current tax/cgt free rules I don't agree and think physical wins hands down, this year I have purchased gold at less than a 4% premium and have been offered to buy it back 1% over spot, so under 3% premium (this will of course vary), it won't take that many years to negate the cheapness of an ETF and then it's effectively free for ever (perfect to hand down to children)

    Another benefit is it that it's not taking up any ISA/pension allowance.

    You do however need to be comfortable actually keeping the physical, I understand this would cause many to worry and if that would be you then I would say it would not be worth it.

    Personally I see it as a bit of a comfort blanket, I can't actually see me ever selling it unless I was desperate, and don't own it in the hope it will make me rich, just knowing I could use it if needed is enough for me.

    Plus its all shiny and gold and can be riffled like poker chips...  :D
  • AretnapAretnap Forumite
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    Are you planning for a scenario in which there's a total collapse of all currencies, and IT systems to boot, and therefore presumably most economic activity, but where you'll still be able to use your gold coins to buy cars, refined petroleum, fresh food, iPhones, Netflix subscriptions etc etc? If so, how would that work exactly?

    Or are you planning for a general collapse in modern civilization? In which case tinned food, guns, a generator and a stockpile of fuel, and perhaps some easily fortified real estate will probably serve you better than some shiny metal which will probably be stolen by the first gang of roving outlaws who you try to trade with.
  • KondongoKondongo Forumite
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    Liked those replies - many thanks. 

    Actually, countering all Government advice, we've already weathered one storm (Arwen), last year when we had no electricity (which also affected our area's water supply) for over 10 days, by having an oil fired Aga - cooker/toaster/kettle/clothes drier/rooms (above and next to it) heater, etc. (no electricity is needed to run it in manual mode) 2000 litres of heating oil and a byre filled with 3 months supply of anthracite, plus 2 years back-up of logs.  The rain off the byre roof, together ample water storage, and a simple filter, meant we were sitting cosy at 1200 feet above sea-level in the rural North Pennines. We've added a small jenny this year to save on the cost of candles and batteries for the next storm and outage.

    I particularity appreciate the comment about canned food.  Bulk buying of rice and pin-head oats, and similar stuff, has always been our preference as we have been snowed in for a week at a time on many occasionas.  On that theme, a like-minded neighbour (we're a hardy prepping type up here) mentioned how cartons of fags and cases of whisky, might also be worth considering (neither of us smoke or drink) as a bartering possibility.  I declined to mention how I thought a case or two of ammo might prove its worth least he began to think I was a bit edgy! 

    I agree, physical gold coin would be helpful in the event of, hopefully, less severe, but likely, disruptive, 'blips' in the economy over the next few years. Comparatively high value and relatively portable. So no digigold then.  I'm thinking 2023 Britannias as vat-free and, currently, no CGT.   Do they actually deliver them to your home? DPD like :) ?  Seriously, I'm only thinking small, say £10K - £15K? Would there be an official record of the purchase beyond the Royal Mint? With CBDC potentially on the horizon, I'm also wondering what implication buying might hold, if any, for more independently minded people.


  • edited 30 December 2022 at 9:45PM
    masonicmasonic Forumite
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    edited 30 December 2022 at 9:45PM
    A quick forum search should throw up several threads were providers of coins by post are recommended and discussed, some of which are more competitive than others. I believe several of these use Royal Mail Special Delivery, so keep an eye on postal strikes if you go down this route. I'm sure these providers will keep records, but I doubt they would be shared except in the case of a criminal investigation.
  • lohr500lohr500 Forumite
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    If you physically want to hold the gold yourself, then do shop around for your Britannias or bullion. The prices do vary by quite a lot. Atkinsons were cheapest for Britannias a few weeks back. They delivered a single Britannia to me by Royal Mail Special Delivery with a mandatory signature on handover by the postman.

    It seems that with Britannias there is also quite a wide spread between the buy and sell prices, so you will be paying a chunk over the gold spot rate to purchase them. 

    Given your fears over global meltdown, digigold may not be for you, but for me it makes more sense than having a stash of gold hidden around the house. In the end I went with the Royal Mint digigold offering as the buying and selling fees seemed very reasonable, as did the annual storage charges.

    Lets face it, if there was an armageddon scenario, then how would the price of gold be set anyway? You would probably stand more chance bartering some of your oil, anthracite or wood stock for food or other urgently needed necessities than trading your gold. 
  • KondongoKondongo Forumite
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    lohr500 said:
    If you physically want to hold the gold yourself, then do shop around for your Britannias or bullion. The prices do vary by quite a lot. Atkinsons were cheapest for Britannias a few weeks back. They delivered a single Britannia to me by Royal Mail Special Delivery with a mandatory signature on handover by the postman.

    It seems that with Britannias there is also quite a wide spread between the buy and sell prices, so you will be paying a chunk over the gold spot rate to purchase them. 

    Given your fears over global meltdown, digigold may not be for you, but for me it makes more sense than having a stash of gold hidden around the house. In the end I went with the Royal Mint digigold offering as the buying and selling fees seemed very reasonable, as did the annual storage charges.

    Lets face it, if there was an armageddon scenario, then how would the price of gold be set anyway? You would probably stand more chance bartering some of your oil, anthracite or wood stock for food or other urgently needed necessities than trading your gold. 

    Really helpful reply too.  Many thanks and Happy New Year.
  • KondongoKondongo Forumite
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    So, looking at Britannias, for example, I noticed that I can buy some today on one site for £1602, but they would buy the same coin back from me at £1463, so a loss of £139 per coin.  That's quite a loss.  Maybe commission on top of that too, and obviously also secure postage costs? 

    The 'spread', I believe it's called, appears quite high and was at a similar level on two other sites I checked out.  Is that normal?  I guess I'm being naive if I thought it would be less, but to my non-expert eye that seems a heft loss, and the gold would need to make some marked growth to justify those sort of costs.  Obviously, in reality I'd be thinking of years rather than buy/sell on the same day.
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