What is IRA Approved Gold? Get To Know What You Are Investing In!


For gold to be IRA approved, it has to pass a certain criteria given by the IRS. The IRA custodian can assist you with how you can purchase IRA approved gold. First, the gold must have at least 99.5% purity and fineness and must be manufactured from a national government mint. Here are some examples of IRA-approved gold:

  • U.S. Buffalo Bullion Coin
  • American English Bullion Coin
  • American Gold Buffalo Coin
  • Austrian Philharmonic Bullion Coin
  • American Eagle Proof Coins
  • Canadian Maple Leaf Coins
  • Pearl Harbor Coins
  • Perth Mint Bars
  • Australian Kangaroo/Nugget Coins
  • Johnson Matthey Gold Bars
  • Other products that meet the minimum IRS standards for gold IRA.

The best thing about Gold IRA is that is in not only limited to gold investments, but you can also invest in other precious metals such as silver, platinum and palladium. Let's get to know more about these precious metals.

What Metals are Approved in a Gold IRA


Silver is one of the most popular precious metals worldwide, aside from gold. It is most common in jewelry and silverware. Like gold, not all silver coins or silver bars are allowed if you want to open a silver IRA account. Here are some examples of IRA-accepted silver:

  • American Eagle Bullion
  • American Eagle Proof Coins
  • America the Beautiful Coins
  • Australian Kookaburra
  • Austrian Vienna Philharmonic
  • Canadian Maple Leaf
  • Johnson Matthey Silver Bars
  • Mexican Libertad Bullion Coins
  • Other products that meet the minimum IRS standards for gold IRA.


Platinum is one of the precious metals allowed for a precious metals IRA. It is one of the most in-demand precious metals due to its use in jewelry and vehicles. Platinum is also one of the rarest metals and is more expensive than gold. Here is the accepted platinum under gold IRA:

  • American Eagle Bullion
  • American Eagle Proof Coins
  • Australian Koala Bullion Coins
  • Canadian Maple Leaf Bullion Coins
  • Isle of Man Noble Bullion Coins
  • Other products that meet the minimum IRS standards for precious metals IRA.


Palladium is another precious metal eligible for gold IRA. It is also mainly used for jewelry, vehicles, and dental purposes. It is silvery white and is probably the most expensive among the four precious metals allowed for gold IRA investments. Here are the accepted palladiums under gold IRA:
  • Canadian Maple Leaf Palladium Coins
  • Other products that meet the minimum IRS standards for gold IRA.

Types of Precious Metals That Are Not Allowed In A Gold IRA

Even though a Gold IRA allows you to invest in precious metals does not mean you are allowed to invest in any precious metals you want. While gold, silver, platinum, and palladium are allowed, some other precious metals are not permitted as a Gold IRA investment.

  • Here are some examples of precious metals not accepted under a Gold IRA:
  • Austrian Corona and Ducat
  • Belgian Franc
  • British Britannia Coins
  • British Sovereign
  • Chilean Peso
  • Columbian Peso
  • Dutch Guilder
  • French Franc
  • German Mark
  • Hungarian Korona
  • Italian Lira
  • Mexican Peso
  • Somalia Elephant Coins
  • South African Krugerrand
  • Swiss Franc

Pros and Cons of Investing in Gold IRA

Gold IRA, like any other investment, comes with risks and benefits. It is vital to note that before you open up a gold IRA account, you should know what comes with this type of investment. Here are some pros and cons you might consider before opening up a gold IRA account:


  • Physical precious metal does not depreciate.
  • You are assured that your gold IRA investment will be safe in the face of skyrocketing inflation or a crashing stock market because investments in gold or other precious metals are not directly related to the stock market.
  • It is an excellent way to diversify your investment portfolio and increase your IRA assets.
  • You do not have to go through the stressful process of managing your gold IRA accounts alone. You will have custodians that will help with your gold IRA transactions.
  • It is an excellent long-term investment. Aside from acting as a hedge for your assets in case of a market crisis, you will be able to earn significantly at the same time until you retire.


  • It is more expensive than traditional investments because you have to pay more fees, such as insurance, storage, and broker fees, than conventional investments.
  • You cannot just invest in any gold or precious metals that you set your eyes on. Not all kinds of precious metals are accepted for this type of investment. The IRS only allows several kinds of precious metals to be eligible for gold IRA, which is screened under strict guidelines and standards.
  • If you opt to take out your retirement investment earlier than the allowed period, you will have to pay a 10% penalty.

How Can You Open a Gold IRA Account?

Opening up a gold IRA account is relatively easy.
step 1

Choose Your Custodian

Choosing a custodian is probably one of the most critical factors in opening a gold IRA account. Your custodian will be the one who will oversee your assets and account transactions. Also, the IRS requires a custodian for these retirement investment accounts.

step 2

Funding Your Gold IRA

If you want to invest in a gold IRA, it is essential to remember that there is an annual contribution limit of $6,000 if you are younger than 50 and $7,000 if you are 50 or older.

step 3

Choose an IRS-Approved Gold to Buy

Not all kinds of gold or precious metals are eligible for gold IRA. You cannot just buy any gold or silver coin in the market. The IRS has a set of standards to deem a precious metal eligible for gold IRA. Ensure that the precious metal you purchase is within IRS standards to avoid problems in your investment transactions.

step 4

 Use an Approved Depository

Before buying your first gold, make sure you have it stored in an IRS-approved depository. Home storage for these precious metals is not allowed by the IRS and will be considered a withdrawal.

Vital Reminders Before Acquiring Any Precious Metal Investment in Gold IRA

  • Before anything else, research what type of gold IRA account you want to open. Take note that there are three types of precious metals IRA you can choose Traditional Gold IRA, Roth IRA, and SEP Gold IRA. Each of these three retirement investment accounts differs in terms of limitations and contributions. Ensure you choose the one that works best for you.
  • If you want to invest in gold, ensure that it passes the authenticity screening with at least 99.5% purity. Silver is supposed to be 99.9% pure and 99.95% pure for both palladium and platinum. The IRS will not accept anything lower in value than those mentioned.
  • If you are planning on investing in small bullion bars, you should check if it has been manufactured according to the exact weight specifications: bullion and coins must be free from damage and in excellent uncirculated condition.
  • If you are planning to purchase a gold bar, its price will depend on how much it will weigh in gold. So, you need to consider how much budget you are willing to invest in choosing the kind of gold for your investment.
  • What are your financial goals? What is your purpose in opening a gold IRA account? Make sure you choose the best gold IRA company to help you meet your goals and purpose in opening a gold IRA account.

Should I Open a Gold IRA?

If you are after a long-term investment for your retirement, investing in a precious metals IRA is probably one of the best options you have out there. 

Aside from diversifying your investment portfolio, a gold or precious metals IRA can help cushion your assets during unfortunate times. Their value is not directly affected by the rise and fall of the stock market and the currency. In fact, it is the opposite; when the dollar value drops, the value of precious metals, most especially gold, increases. 

A dollar's value may decrease to zero, but it will never happen to precious metals. Thus, many investors are looking at investing in precious metals to prepare themselves and their assets in case there is a struggle in the market. It is an excellent way of hedging your holdings against a downturn in the market while simultaneously allowing you to earn a significant profit from your investment when you retire.

About the author 

Rosebel Lacastesantos

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