Can Bacteria Produce Gold?

News from earlier this month is still circulating about a newly discovered bacterium that…how do we put this…“excretes” gold under the right conditions.

That’s right—when forced into a toxic environment saturated with gold chloride, Cupriavidus metallidurans will essentially eat up the toxins of gold chloride and leave behind pure, 24K nuggets. Gold skeptics and scaremongers are having a field day with this so-called discovery, in spite of the fact that the project is part of an art show, and the creators of the process acknowledge there is no profitable way to use this bacteria to create gold.

Nevertheless, if you cruise the feedback on Facebook or under the news articles themselves, you’ll find comment after derisive comment suggesting “gold hounds” should sell all their bullion before the value plummets, or voicing relief that “we’re not on the gold standard anymore.” Some even go so far as to suggest the world can stimulate its economy by harvesting gold chloride from asteroids and thereby fund government recovery projects.

Let’s get real.

It doesn’t take more than a minute of basic research on gold chloride and the process in question to understand what ridiculous claims these are. Gold chloride is, in laymen’s terms, liquid gold. And all that Cupriavidus metallidurans does is separate the chlorine from the gold molecules that are already present in the formula. While the discovery of this bacterium may tell scientists something about how some gold is created in nature, it is not the philosopher’s stone the media would have us believe. The bottom line: it takes gold to make gold chloride. These researchers have not created gold, they’ve merely isolated pre-existing gold.

To suggest there might be some profit in this technology is like suggesting real estate developers could earn money by tearing down their existing houses and then using the materials to build… more houses. Or that a car manufacturer could just take unsold inventory and use the parts to create… more of the same inventory. Needless to say, we’ll be among the first to warn you when pigs fly and gold starts materializing out of thin air. Until then, the precious yellow metal is still an excellent investment and hedge against inflation.

When Your Shipping Costs as Much as the Round…


Just recently we, here at Gold Scams received a tip about a dealer called Discount Gold Brokers. I was immediately suspicious when I saw the cheesy look to the website and large bold text claiming it offered 0% above the dealer’s price. I’ve heard of discounts on premiums, but no premium at all? If that were true, how would the dealer make a living?

While roaming the site, I did in fact find that their prices were astoundingly low, and they weren’t necessarily pushing one product as a “loss leader”. With generic rounds, generic gold bars, and higher-valued rounds like the Maple Leaf and Buffalo at these prices, I can see why someone would stop and consider them as a bullion dealer.

BUT — Being an experienced gold & silver buyer, I know that not all dealers are honest. So, instead of being astonished and sucked in immediately by Discount Gold Brokers’ impeccable premiums, I dug deeper. 

Here is what I found:

Did you catch it? The price drastically changed at check out because an astronomical shipping price was added in. $28.00 for shipping one ounce of silver?! I know for a fact that using the, sometimes inefficient, U.S. Postal Service is a far better deal than that. You can ship a small package for as low as $5.90 in some instances, even less for a smaller envelope. Many bullion dealers even offer shipping for free. So, unless Discount Gold Brokers’ shipping services also bring you a homemade apple pie and a swedish massage upon delivery, I don’t think this purchase is worth the while.

The website does list, in the fine print, that shipping has an initial charge of $28 for the first ounce, and it only increases by one dollar for every extra ounce added into your order. Even then, if you bought 100 ounces of silver that would cost you $127 in shipping! Last time I checked 100 ounces of silver does not fill an industrial size box.

All in all, the shipping is where Discount Gold Brokers will get you. Boy, these high-markup dealers are getting crafty…

Don’t get ripped off. Download Peter Schiff’s latest report on gold scams to stay ahead of the game!

Happy buying,


Some Must Reads in the Silver and Gold World

With every wonderful investment opportunity comes the brains who had the guts to stand up and share the wealth (no pun intended). Precious metals “investing” can be dated back to ancient Rome and even further. There have been numerous voices singing the praises of hard assets. Well, here’s a few of the contemporary writers/influential voices. Read these books. You’ll feel well-versed in precious metal history and buying, which in turn will help you deter any scams that come your way:

“The Case Against the Fed” – Dr. Ron Paul

“Crash Proof 2.0: How to Profit From the Economic Collapse” – Peter Schiff

“Guide to Investing in Gold & Silver” – Mike Maloney

“Precious Metal Investing for Dummies” – Paul Mladjenovic

“Get the Skinny on Silver Investing” – David Morgan

Each author has their own flavor and perspective, but most agree having a portion, if not a big chunk, of your portfolio in physical metal is a good idea. Take a gander at these books and see if you can become that much more prepared for your silver and gold buying experiences.

Happy buying,


Spongebob Silver

Not only is this eye-catching because of the cubic sea creature featured on the round, but let’s look at the price here! Four – one ounce .999 pure silver rounds are being sold here for $259.00! As I check today’s silver spot price, I can tell you that this is not a good deal at all…unless of course you are a HUGE fan of cartoon sponges. As you all know, rare coins and numismatics will not always increase in value like you are told (almost never). This New Zealand coin, that is marked as a two-dollar legal form of currency in New Zealand has the Queen Elizabeth picture on the back making it a very unique coin. Ahh…when product placement meets currency. I wonder if the dollar will ever have “Coca-Cola” listed on it one day?

I know, I know, it’s meant to be for a collection for big fans…and the nice chest, oh the nice chest is factored into the price. Either way with today’s spot price, $259.00 is a downright rip off. I hope they aren’t planning to dupe anyone into this with a talk about “future value of the coins”.

Is there any kind of coin or round you would buy because of a certain face or product being minted on it? I know there have been rounds with Presidents, other politicians, and heck, you can even order Michael Jackson on a Silver Eagle if you want. Even if you knew you were paying for the esthetic bonus and not the silver value would you spend an extra 10-20+%, or do you just want your silver? Tell us in the comment section below.

My advice is skip the fancy Spongebob and get some real bullion that’s worth the price.

Happy buying,


Destructive Testing on Fake Silver

It looks like some fake Sunshine Mint bars and Canadian Maple Leafs have made their way into the physical silver market. Here’s a backyard way to find out if your silver is in fact silver! [Warning: Use goggles and protective gear, this isn’t meant to keep your silver in pristine condition]

Happy buying and keep a close eye,


p.s. If you haven’t read Peter Schiff’s full report on Gold Scams, now is the time.

Two Sides to Physical Bullion Investing

As we all know, precious metals are a safe haven in the disastrous financial system we have been forced into today. Many people are flocking to physical bullion even before ETF’s and derivatives because the presence of bullion is then there and present in the hands of the owner. I don’t blame them.

About a year ago I had the wonderful opportunity to sit down with David Morgan, the author of Get the Skinny on Silver Investing. After covering all of the reasons one should, at least, consider a portion of their portfolio for precious metals, I had to ask: Should we sit on this metal until SHTF, or should we play it in the market, exchanging it for dollars as the price of the metal hits its peaks. As you know many gold and silver dealers sell you the apocalyptic story at times to convince you you’ll need the metal to purchase your dinner one day!

David Morgan had the answer. There’s no reason, with enough physical bullion accumulated, why you can’t do both. Stash away a portion of your investment for the future, whether it be for a severe economic collapse, or for your children’s college fund some day down the road (although with inflation these days that is scary to think how many ounces of gold it would take to pay off those four years). Keep this long term stash in a well-protected safe. For the other portion of silver you’ve allocated for trade, watch the market. It can seem sometimes, with our monetary policy, that there is never a good time to sell, however if you are in need of dollars and see silver spike up, flip some into cash. The best advice any investor can give is don’t get yourself into debt. Use your physical bullion wisely and you might make it out of this economic calamity with both socks on.

There is no specific amount to guide you on how much should be long-term and how much short-term, but that is because everyone’s investment outlooks and goals are a bit different. Find out what works for you.

Happy buying (and selling I suppose),


YouTube Playlist on How to Spot Fake Silver (Morgan’s and filled bars)

Who would have known that someone would take the time to arrange a slew of videos that can help you learn how to spot fake silver. As much as we warn against buying from unknown dealers, sometimes a deal comes up that can seem trustworthy, whether or not the dealer has a business on the books. In the case you’ve come across a nice deal to purchase bullion outside of an established dealer store, use caution. This YouTube playlist of videos can be one extra step you can take to ensure you are not ripped off.

Fake Silver Playlist

The most popular of these scams is the Morgan Dollar, a coin minted from 1878 until 1904, and again in 1921 for a short amount of time. The handiest tool against Morgan Dollar counterfeiters is a small scale that can measure to the hundredth of an gram, even though most metal is measured in ounces (most digital scales have an ounce AND gram option). If the coin does not measure within one hundredth of an ounce from 26.73g, then cancel the deal because you are about to get jipped. This Morgan Dollar scam was mostly being tracked on eBay.

These videos also meant the drill and fill method with 100 ozt silver bars where scammers would drill out a hole in the bar and extract as much silver as they could before filling it back up with lead. Lead is drastically different in weight, compared to silver, so that alone should help you detect any potential scams.

Hope you find these videos useful!

Happy buying,


The Truth About Confiscation

As we all become more immersed in the silver and gold buying world we see the fear mongering around every corner. “No, the risks…it’s not a safe investment!”…”The government could knock on your door and take it all away tomorrow.”

We all know the FDR story back in the 1930’s where an executive order required all citizen’s gold to be collected at local Federal Reserve branches and then given an artificial price increase. Today the fear lives on as the precious metal world proliferates the executive order’s chance to reappear. There are several reasons why silver and gold have a very small chance of ever being taken from its owners’ hands by the government. Silver above all stands little chance of confiscation. Its industrial use and meek presence in the United States wouldn’t even assist the government with the astronomical debt today. It also wouldn’t be the individuals the government would first target; it’d be the mining companies.

Learn more about the history of the gold confiscation and why, especially silver, and gold are safe in the hands of investors. Aside from that, do you really think FDR’s executive order rid the hands of all Americans?

This video, in the majority of the first half, covers all the reasons why silver, especially, has low odds of ever being confiscated by the Federal Government.

So next time you hear a gold/silver salesperson try to insist on protecting yourself from this unlikely event, remember our blog and give THEM the facts! Read more about gold scams and how to avoid them in Peter Schiff’s Report.

South Park: Cash for Gold!

It’s no surprise that with the growing popularity of physical bullion buying, Trey Parker and Matt Stone take on the gold scamming culture we now live in. The creators of South Park have been tackling some timely issues (the TSA, Dolphin Killings, and next week the GOP Primary!) in a hilarious manner, so I wasn’t surprised one bit with the wit they added so gracefully into Episode 16 of this Season’s South Park:

Cash for gold stores and shopping networks have been around for decades, but with the new emergence of social networks, and the intergenerational use of the internet, the choices have now become more broad, allowing competition to weed out the scammers!

The bait and switch method still exists, and the example of home shopping networks in this episode is a great one, ie: selling at a “discounted” price claiming that the collector’s edition is worth way more. This same strategy is comparable to the numismatic sales from scammers who claim that the date or style of the coin, regardless of its metal content, will make it a worthy investment. Unless you can find the collector looking for that exact coin, it’s not.

Do you homework, and don’t end up like Stan’s grandpa. Read Peter Schiff’s Gold Scam report.

Happy buying,


My First Piece of Gold

So we recently began asking people to share their first gold/silver bullion buying experience. Little did we know how “off the radar” and hush-hush everyone would be. I’ve offered to not release any names but only the text sent our way. By sharing these types of stories with other buyers and curious investors we are working faster than the unethical bullion dealers can keep up. With peers near and far sharing their experiences, we’ll surely create an intelligent group of physical precious metal buyers who can pass the knowledge down.

So here’s one story from a reader about his transaction that happened over, none other than, our centripetal force of nature: Facebook.

“I knew my friend had some gold bars. I wanted one. So I sent him a facebook message asking if he was willing to sell me one. He was pissed that I sent a facebook message considering that he wanted his gold ownership to be ‘off the radar’. Regardless, he sold me a 1 ounce Credit Suisse ingot for Spot.

A few days later, I sent the ingot, plus $200 in twenty-dollar bills to my friend, a gold/silver dealer in Montana. He exchanged the CS bar for 10, 1/10th ounce Kruggerands.

I don’t really consider the Kruggerands and bag of junk silver an ‘investment’ but rather a hedge on ‘tail events’ like hyperinflation, currency controls, etc.”

One great point here is that the reader, who we’ll call Jane for now, wasn’t aware of the privacy measures her seller was trying to take. Not her fault, if you ask me. On another note,  strategic plays with buying and selling gold and silver is a great way to immerse yourself in the market as well as connect with local dealers, who will most likely be the best place to sell your physical PM’s.

Submit your first silver or gold buying experience today in the comments section! We’d love to hear from you, and I’m sure our readers would too!