Buying Gold & Silver
for Superannuation Funds

Superannuation funds are becoming increasingly interesting to people of all ages of late, because everyone at some point will start to think about the future, about retirement, and thus, about the security of the funds needed for the future. Perhas you have noticed there has been a large increase in the amount of television advertising relating to Superannuation, aimed at people of varying ages and occupations. The Superannuation market is a lucratiive one, considering that it is compulsory savings for the majority of Australians and a sensible financial management tool for those who are business owners or self employed. The recent delivery of the annual Budget indicates that Australia can no longer ignore the fact that it lives beyond it’s means and has done so for a long time. An ageing population and an unhealthy reliance on social welfare means that unless fundamental changes are made to the way the economy is run and the expectations society places upon it, financial disaster is on the horizon. Australians can no longer rely on an aged pension delivered regardless of assets, the retirement age is increasing steadily and for many, having superannuation income will be the difference between a reasonable standard of living in their retirement years and the poverty line. One way to secure your future is to invest in gold or silver. Industry super funds do not currently deal in this type of investment – this must be done through a SMSF (Self-Managed Superannuation Fund). SMSF can be used to buy gold bullion, silver, and platinum for investment purposes. Remember – the main goal of your super fund is to secure your money for when you retire.

Unfortunately, during the recent global financial crisis, millions of dollars vanished from many superannuation funds. The fact is that paper money and the stock market always have a high propensity to lose value during these times. If you are a younger person with many years of productive earning ahead of you, this is a disappointing and frustrating occurence. If you are near retirement with no other back up, it is nothing short of devastating. If you would like more control over the risk that your money is exposed to, or you would like to mitigate some of it by balancing your portfolio with a more conservative option, such as bullion, the only means possible is to manage your own super fund. To start your own self-managed superannuation fund, you can speak to any financial advisor who can help you decide if it’s the best option for you and instruct you on how to set up the fund according to your own requirements. There are several options on who can set up your SMSF for you and how it can be structured. Managing your own super incurs some responsibilities, and the fact is  SMSF may not be suitable for everyone, so you should make sure that you obtain professional financial advice before you decide on this course of action.

How to properly invest in a SMSF

If you decide that you would like to set up your own fund, here are some suggested steps you should follow, taken from the Australian SMSF praxis:

●     Engage an accountant or lawyer to establish a SMSF. A SMSF can have four members; they can be, for example, family members. The SMSF is a Trust under the law. The members of the fund are the Trustees. The Trust has a set of investment objectives. It is recommended that you make sure that The Trust can invest in precious metals, including gold and silver bullion bars and coins, as the part of investment objectives. After that, a bank account will be opened for the Trust.

●     Consolidate any of your existing Super funds, if you have them..

●     Purchase your bullion. You can buy and take delivery of gold and silver bullion. Of course, bullion bars have to be stored securely. Banks and other companies can offer this kind of service. Some institutions even have certificate programs whereby they store precious metals for you. You should keep records of all your transactions for the annual audit.

●     Each year your SMSF must be checked ( audited). The company that established your SMSF can do this. It is best to shop around when establishing the fund to get a low annual audit cost.

Many investors would like their SMSF to be safer. The aim is to preserve money until retirement. This is the main reason why they prefer low risk instruments like gold and silver bullion bars as part of their SMSF.

The benefits of investing in gold and silver

The main benefits of investing in gold and silver bullion for SMSF are, for example, reducing the effects of both inflation and deflation, in which case paper money loses its buying power. Then we have the important consideration of balancing the superannuation portfolio in order to improve its performance and risk profile, Gold and silver bullion has historically shown that they maintain their value, so the risk is minimized.

Your SMSF is founded to protect your savings until you retire.  It is a common belief nowadays that Government pensions that have been long taken for granted are not likely to exist in the future at all if the retiree has even a small amount of assets, so this makes the preservation of your super and it’s security all the more important. Your main goal is not just to work hard, but to save smart. Many financial advisors would agree that gold and silver are valuable inclusions in any well-balanced portfolio.

Precious metals are a well-proven form of wealth preservation, especially in times of economic instability and financial crisis. When the prices of shares go down in the market, gold and silver can perform in opposition, so including gold and silver in your portfolio can help you make your fund safer. The gold price has been increasing by an average of 14 to 15 percent each year, for the last seven years. With this in mind, buying gold and silver now can ensure value remains in your retirement savings for the future.

By Lisa Casagrande |


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