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In the US, there are hundreds of precious metals dealers that sell gold and silver online. But not all of them are safe to invest with. Scams abound, so it's important to make sure you trust the company you're working with.
Fidelitrade is a company that sells gold, silver, palladium, and platinum. But what exactly should you know about them before you get started?
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History of Fidelitrade
Fidelitrade began operating in 1998, but the company's roots go back further. The company founder, Jon Potts, was originally the Vice President of the precious metals section of the Wilmington Trust bank. In 1997, that bank announced that it would stop working in precious metals and close down the entire precious metals department.
Jon Potts could have accepted the shutdown and asked to be reassigned to a different position. But instead, he offered to buy out the entire precious metals division. That way, the sector could retain their precious metals clients and hire five former employees.
Wilmington Trust agreed to this in order to keep their customers and employees happy. That was when Fidelitrade really got its start. In the beginning, there were 5 employees in one tiny office. But they have since grown to have over 50 employees and four buildings owned entirely by the company.
Fidelitrade operates with the assumption that taking care of employees and clients is the best policy. The vast majority of their new clients come through referrals, rather than advertisements. That's impressive considering how much the business has grown.
One of Fidelitrade's subsidiaries is the Delaware Depository. This depository company is one of the most popular for storing precious metals. It can hold IRAs, individual investor accounts, and even bullion for large entities like banks. Fidelitrade is one of only 12 global companies to be designated as an Authorized Purchaser for the United States Mint.
Fidelitrade is one of the biggest precious metals dealers in the world. They anticipate that as global economic concerns drive the desire for precious metals, they will only grow more.
First and foremost, Fidelitrade is a bullion dealer. They buy precious metals products directly from sovereign mints around the globe. All of their products are certified, so customers can be sure that they're getting the real deal.
The company doesn't loan metals, nor do they have any debts. The Delaware Depository fully insures all customer vaults up to values of $1 billion. The management team for the company has almost 300 years of total combined experience in the precious metals industry.
Fidelitrade has one of the largest inventories in the US, thanks to their trade deals with other precious metals partners. They provide access to many different products with competitive pricing.
After creating an account, your first purchase can be worth up to $15,000. If you want to buy more than that for your initial purchase, you'll need to give the company a deposit before doing so.
The preferred methods of payment are through your credit card, bank wire, check, or ACH. You can only buy $3,000 or less with a credit card, and $30,000 or less with ACH electronic payments.
If you have precious metals that you'd like to liquidate, Fidelitrade is willing to buy. They'll even buy if you didn't purchase from them in the first place.
All bullion needs to be sent to the Delaware Depository and put into a vault before you sell it. The company does offer to help with shipping. You'll get 30 days of free storage, so you can monitor the prices of precious metals and liquidate when you feel you have the best advantage.
If you buy generic bullion in bulk from Fidelitrade, then you can use the accumulation plan. The bulk bullion purchases are completely backed by real precious metals, so you can have them delivered whenever you want. By buying in bulk, you can purchase precious metals without the premiums associated with bars and coins.
With the accumulation plan, you'll purchase bullion on a monthly or bi-monthly basis. All you choose is how much to invest and what type of bullion. The only minimum requirement for using this plan is spending $100 per month on bulk bullion.
Is Fidelitrade a Scam?
No, this company isn't a scam. They have a high level of transparency about their founding and company values. In addition, they have been operating since 1998, meaning that they've managed nearly 25 years in the precious metals industry.
Fidelitrade is accredited with the Better Business Bureau and holds an A+ rating, indicating that they provide good customer service. No public complaints have been filed against the company in the past three years. There are two customer reviews on the BBB website, both of which give 5 out of 5 stars.
One of the reviewers said that she was very pleased by the service, and she specifically mentioned the representative Courtney. Courtney was able to help this reviewer stay calm and navigate an incredibly stressful issue with a different company. The customer said that she couldn't ever have made it through the ordeal without Courtney's patience and guidance.
The company responded to thank her for the review. They said that they also believe Courtney is a strong asset and that they're grateful to have her on the team.
The other reviewer also specifically mentioned Courtney. He said that he was a first time buyer of precious metals, so having Courtney to help was very fortunate. She was able to answer all of the questions he had as a beginning investor. The customer said that he felt secure and that the entire process was straightforward and easy.
The company replied to thank the customer for the feedback. They said that they really appreciate Courtney and have worked with her for years. They also said that it's important to them to care for both their employees and their customers.
Pros & Cons of Fidelitrade
Fidelitrade is a precious metals company with a lot going for it. They have been in business for more than 20 years and have grown significantly during that time period. There are a few positive reviews online, which specifically mention the most helpful employees.
The company also has a high level of transparency. You can read up on their history and current management on their website. They have pages explaining exactly how their services work and which companies they partner with. There are even services for banks and institutions.
There are a few potential drawbacks, though. One of the biggest is that it's hard to find reviews from past customers. There are only two on the BBB website, along with zero complaints. Some other companies have dozens or even hundreds of reviews from past consumers who describe their experiences.
Another potential drawback is that the IRA services aren't as streamlined as with some competitors. It looks like you work directly with your custodian to set up your account. Some other gold dealers will handle that communication for you. There's also only one storage company option, the Delaware Depository.
For this reason, we recommend working with a different company if you set up an IRA. But for general purchases, there's nothing holding you back from investing with Fidelitrade. They seem to have solid policies and a long history to back it up.
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