You can't own physical gold in a normal IRA, although you can invest in a variety of assets exposed to gold, such as the stocks of gold mining companies or gold exchange-traded funds (ETFs). Not all investments in gold can be owned by an IRA. The basic rule is that an IRA cannot own a collector's item and precious metals are defined as collectibles, whether the investment is in ingots or coins. Fortunately, there are exceptions to the general rule for gold, silver, platinum and palladium, which hold true in certain forms.
Specialized custodians Standard custodians, such as Fidelity, Schwab or TD Ameritrade, will not manage physical gold in an IRA. So, if you want to keep gold in your IRA, you must first set up a self-directed IRA and then find a custodian who specializes in self-directed gold IRA accounts. A quick Google search for “self-directed golden anger” yields a lot of results. I know that American Bullion has existed for years, as has APMEX.
Gold IRAs are normally defined as “alternative investments”, meaning that they are not traded on a public exchange and require special experience to value them. It creates the inference that only ingots, and not gold coins, should remain in the possession of the trustee. Since gold is the most commonly bought of the four, the general term gold IRA is most often used as industrial jargon to refer to a retirement account containing any combination of precious metals. For a gold IRA, you need a broker to buy the gold and a custodian to create and manage the account.
Required Minimum Distributions Once you turn 70 and a half years old, your Gold IRA will be subject to a required Minimum Distribution (RMD), just like any other IRA other than Roth. Gold Buying and Storage Costs Once you decide on a specialized, self-directed gold IRA depositary, you should remember that all aspects of buying, storing, and selling gold entail fees. Those using self-managed IRA accounts to invest in gold, silver, or other precious metals should consult an attorney with experience in self-directed IRA. However, these rules don't say that the owner of a self-directed IRA account can take physical possession of the coins or metal.
If gold seems like a good option to you, Sentell suggests investing no more than one-third of your retirement funds in a gold IRA. An unanswered question regarding these IRAs is whether the owner of the IRA can take physical possession of gold, silver, or other precious metals. The IRS has issued judgments by private letter to major gold ETFs stating that IRAs can own ETFs. While it's legal to own gold or silver through an IRA or other retirement account with some restrictions, it's not the best or most efficient way to own precious metals.
The full text does not create an exception to the well-established rules according to which IRA assets must be in the hands of a trustee and that the owner of an IRA who takes possession of the IRA's assets receives a taxable distribution. Therefore, if your portfolio is balanced with investments in gold and paper, the losses on the gold side will be offset by the gains experienced by other assets. As the court pointed out, external custodians announced that their customers could take physical possession of the coins purchased by IRAs. Starting in 1998, an IRA can invest in certain platinum coins and certain gold, silver, palladium, and platinum bars.