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You can buy anything online these days, and that goes especially for precious metals. Rather than shopping local prices, you can purchase from online retailers. Then there are companies like Goldmoney, which use technology platforms to make investing accessible to newcomers.
But what exactly does Goldmoney offer, and how does it work? And what do past customers have to say? The overall satisfaction rating seems to be pretty low, unfortunately. Here's what you should know.
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Goldmoney is a technology platform that's built around the buying and selling of precious metals. When you use the platform, you can sell, buy, and store your bullion. There is a vast network of global depositories that can hold your assets in a fully insured vault.
Goldmoney is publicly traded via the Toronto Stock Exchange. As such, it has extremely transparent published data regarding its finances and business practices. There is no question that the platform is legitimate. But customers have reported extreme dissatisfaction with the overall service.
Part of the appeal of Goldmoney is that you fully own the metals in your account. You can even visit the depository and view the holdings in person. There's no chance of losing your assets due to one of the involved companies going bankrupt.
Goldmoney is far from the only company that will arrange the storage and delivery of precious metals, though. While their platform may seem innovative, you may actually fare better by working with a traditional online retailer.
Third Party Audits
There is one advantage of working with Goldmoney. Since they are a publicly traded company, they are subject to extensive quarterly filings. You can view the company's financial statements for every quarter and year they've been in operation.
In addition, the company audits all of the accounts of the customers in real time. This audit ensures that the actual physical account reflects the online statement.
That said, Goldmoney also isn't the only company that offers third party audits. Most depositories have their own auditing systems to make sure that everyone's accounts remain correct.
When you make purchases through Goldmoney, you get to choose where to store the metals. All of the depositories have strong security. The right one for you may vary depending on your location, tax needs, and the fees.
You have the option to register a specific bar in your own name through your Goldmoney account. This means that the bar will be segregated from other holdings, so you're never at risk for fraud or other issues. Every vault is completely insured, so even if something does happen to your metals, you can be compensated.
Some of the countries where there are depositories include:
Goldmoney's network includes a variety of different international storage companies. They work with Brinks Global Services, Rhemus Logistics, Malca-Amit, Loomis International, and even the Royal Canadian Mint itself.
When you make a purchase, Goldmoney will make sure that your vault's insurance policy fully covers your holdings. There will be a certificate of insurance available to view through your account dashboard.
You will run into some fees when you work with Goldmoney. For example, you will have to pay monthly fees for storage. The rate is usually about $10 per month, or $120 per year. However, once you reach $100,000 in stored precious metals, your storage rate will start to increase.
You will need to pay a fee when you conduct a transaction through Goldmoney. No matter whether you're buying or selling, you will pay a 0.5% fee. These types of percentage-based fees can add up quickly, especially if you do a lot of trading.
If you want to convert one type of precious metal to another, you can do so for a 0.75% fee. The same fee applies to switching your vault location, even if you don't switch between the types of metals.
You can withdraw to international bank accounts with many different currencies. Every currency has its own withdrawal fee. If you use US dollars, you'll be paying $25 for every wire transfer.
Is Goldmoney a Scam?
Goldmoney doesn't appear to be a scam. That is to say, the platform does what it claims to. People are able to put money into their account and trade precious metals. The precious metals belong to you once you purchase them.
But even though the company does provide a legitimate service, that doesn't necessarily mean that they're great to work with. In fact, judging by the online reviews, most customers have had an extremely negative experience. There are multiple complaints online that it's very difficult to withdraw funds from your account, plus complaints about the fee structuring.
This isn't just a handful of disgruntled customers, either. There have been 26 complaints filed with the BBB over the past three years. Though Goldmoney has an A+ with the BBB, they are not accredited. Customer reviews on the website give an average of 1.25 out of 5 stars based on four reviews.
The situation remains bleak when you look at other third party review sites. On Sitejabber, Goldmoney has a 1.5 out of 5 star rating based on 74 reviews, once again indicating unanimous disapproval. Sitejabber doesn't even have any positive highlights to outline.
Perhaps the most major problem is on Trustpilot. On this website, there are over 1,900 reviews from past customers. Goldmoney has a 2.2 out of 5 star average, showing that hundreds upon hundreds of customers have been dissatisfied. About 15% of these reviews give 1 star, amounting to almost 300 people.
In order to maintain an A+ with the BBB, a business must respond to all the complaints filed against them. We can't look at every review, but we can examine a few official complaints. Let's see what customers had to say and how Goldmoney responded.
Most of the reviews of the company that are posted online involve some form of complaint. There are literally hundreds of negative responses across Sitejabber, Trustpilot, and the BBB. That alone lets you know that customers are experiencing a lot of frustration and stress by working with this company.
Basically, if more customers have negative feedback than positive, then you have a major issue. Occasional dissatisfaction is inevitable when you have thousands of customers. But an ideal company will have significantly more positive feedback than negative.
Mysteriously Delayed Transfer
One customer left a complaint in January of 2020 regarding the account they'd had for six months. During those six months, they had added a total of $1,800 to the account. But then the customer received a notice that a storage fee was being added.
The customer didn't have an issue with that, despite some frustration. They chose to withdraw their holdings. But when they sold the metals, they requested a transfer of their liquid cash. The company said that it could take six days for the bank transfer to go through.
But a month went by without anything happening. The customer reached out to ask about the issue, but they never got an email back. Four days later, they reached out again. Once again, there was no response. At this point, the customer called the company.
The representative that the customer spoke to said that the issue was related to the international transfer. There was confusion about which account number should be used. The customer clarified the information and expected the transfer to process. But the requisite six days went by without anything showing up in their account.
The customer said that they had tried to call the company multiple times, but no one was picking up the phone. They couldn't get a representative to talk to, and there was nobody returning their messages. The customer concluded by saying that they were extremely frustrated by the situation and the poor customer service.
Goldmoney responded about a week later to say that the transfer had been processed. The customer replied to say that they were satisfied with the resolution. They also stated that they felt they may have judged too harshly, considering the natural slowdowns around the holidays.
This does seem a little charitable, as there is so much other negative feedback about the company. The customer had also had patience through multiple issues that could have been individual complaints. They didn't complain about the added storage fees, the unexplained lack of transfer, the lack of contact about the account confusion, or the general lack of reception.
It seems like there were a lot of places in this story where Goldmoney could have managed the situation better. Even if the wire transfer was delayed due to the holidays, the company could have been more proactive about updating and working with the customer.
Inability to Withdraw
Another complaint from January of 2020 was filed regarding the withdrawal process for the customer's account. The customer had tried to initiate a transfer in November of the previous year to an Australian bank account. They wanted to withdraw the funds in Australian currency.
But the customer hadn't been able to complete this transfer. They followed the instructions on the website to get in contact with the company's customer relationship management people.
The customer stated that they were disappointed by the delays in the transfer, because now they would need to pay the new storage fee for January. They added that their holdings and bank account had been fully verified. Their goal was for the transfer to be approved.
Goldmoney responded to say that the company had resolved the problem that was preventing the withdrawal. The withdrawal finally went through on February 2 and was processed the following day. Though the company had reached out to ask whether the customer had received the funds, they hadn't been able to get through.
The customer responded to say that the transfer had indeed been processed, and they were now able to access their funds from their bank account.
Yet another complaint about wire transfers was filed in January of 2020. This customer said that they had liquidated their gold and done a wire transfer in December. Their Goldmoney account stated that the transfer had been confirmed.
But the money did not show up in the customer's bank account. Nearly a month had elapsed between initiating the transfer and filing the complaint. The customer had tried to contact Goldmoney, but the representative just said that the funds had been sent and were processing.
Goldmoney responded two weeks later to say that the wire transfer had been resolved, and the funds had been received. At first, the customer said that the funds had not actually arrived at their bank account. But a week later, they stated that the funds had finally arrived.
Ultimately, it took about seven weeks for this customer to receive funds that should have been transferred within a week. This seems to be a common theme when it comes to withdrawals. Goldmoney never explained the reason for the delay or apologized, which may be contributing to the frustration.
Missing Account Number
Another January complaint was filed regarding a wire transfer. The customer had tried to liquidate their holdings and redeem their funds. They had gone through the steps of providing their banking information and paying the fee for the wire transfer.
However, the company made a mistake when initiating the transfer. They wrote the bank account number in the wrong field, which caused the account field to be blank. Obviously the bank was unable to receive funds without any account number attached.
This seems like an issue that should have been easily resolved. But the customer said that they had made six separate attempts to contact Goldmoney through Twitter and email. They were unable to get any response.
Goldmoney responded two weeks later to say that the funds had been successfully sent, and that their receipt was confirmed. They said that because of their increase in transactions, they had been unable to follow up with every customer. Their responses were delayed due to the volume.
Despite stating that they had made adjustments to increase efficiency with the transactions, Goldmoney did receive several more complaints later in that same month regarding the same issue.
Pros & Cons of Goldmoney
Goldmoney is an interesting company in theory. Rather than being a traditional precious metals retailer, they provide a platform for people to trade and buy and store their precious metals. This makes it much more convenient and simple for newbies to invest in the industry.
However, the company is also plagued by a poor reputation. The online reviews are overwhelmingly negative, with hundreds of customers leaving just 1 out of 5 stars. People say that it's borderline impossible to contact the customer service team, and that it's extremely difficult to withdraw their funds when the time comes for liquidation.
Because of how much frustration people report, we can't recommend this company. It seems like more customers have a negative experience than a positive one. There are many precious metals dealers and trading platforms that have significantly better consumer satisfaction rates.
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