APMEX At a Glance
|Fees||There are no account or commission fees, but if you cancel an order there is a $35 fee.|
|Minimum Order||There is no minimum order amount, but orders over $199 ship for free.|
|Investment Options||The range of precious metals including gold, silver, and platinum in a wide variety of products (coins, bars, etc).|
|Redemption Options||You can always sell your metals on the secondary market, but APMEX also offers a purchase program to cash in your metals appreciation.|
What is APMEX?
APMEX is an online precious metals dealer offering many options at different price points for metals investors. APMEX offers, in addition to traditional metals, a few unique features that set it apart. We’ll cover them in more detail shortly, but their options include:
- A portfolio management tool
- The Bullion Card
- APMEX Autoinvest
- A variety of payment options
- Currency sales
APEX also offers non-metals accessories like coin capsules to safely store your investment, presentation boxes to show off, books, safes, cleaning supplies, and magnifiers/loupes to inspect your purchases.
In addition to selling metals to build your portfolio, APMEX also purchases gold and silver from metals holders at competitive pricing so you can cash in on your metals gains.
How APMEX Started
Founder Scott Thomas’s grandfather was a mail-order coin dealer, which sparked Thomas’s interest in coins and metals. Almost 20 years after his grandfather passed away, Thomas uncovered his unsold inventory (worth over $100,000 at the time) and began selling them on eBay.
Over time he began buying and selling coins and metals. He outgrew his basement, so he founded APMEX and bought the Former Federal Reserve building in Oklahoma City to act as a precious metals storage and storefront to sell from.
Today APMEX has over 800 employees and is an innovation leader in the industry.
APMEX Investment Options
APMEX offers a full range of precious metals. Some of their best sellers include:
- Silver bars
- Gold bars
- Silver and gold coins from different countries and of other denominations
- Gold foil notes
In short, they have many options no matter your budget or need – they even have Star Wars-themed silver bars and Dogecoin silver coins!
APMEX prices its metals according to market demand for that specific metal, so minimum investment varies. As an example of the range, for this review, we sorted APMEX’s “most popular” metals products by both lowest and highest price (as of August 14th, 2022):
- Lowest: 1/10 oz Silver Round – Buffalo at $5.69
- Highest: 1-kilo gold bar – Pamp Suisse at $59,882.27
So, as you can see, the pricing varies – which also means that it takes very little starting capital to invest in precious metals with APMEX!
One of the biggest draws to APMEX is the sheer variety of proprietary, unique features that set it apart from the standard metals secondary markets.
APMEX offers a free service to account holders (it’s also free to open an account) that lets you create a portfolio of your metals to track your investment. Instead of monitoring the weights and having to look up daily market prices, you enter your assets into their webpage or app and create a virtual snapshot of what you have and its current worth – just like you would see if you looked at your stock portfolio.
APMEX also offers portfolio alert tools to maximize your strategy. These alerts can:
- Notify you when a metal reaches a set price to inform your buying and selling strategy.
- Notify you when a specific product they offer reaches a certain price that you want to purchase it at.
- Notify you when popular products that sell out fast are restocked.
The Bullion Card
The Bullion Card, a standard credit card managed by Visa, offers perks specific to APMEX. Right now, everyday spending with the credit card will earn:
- 4% back in gold and silver for all purchases made on APMAX.
- 1% back in gold and silver for all other purchases.
- 15,000 bonus points ($150 value) after spending $1,500.
- 0% introductory APR.
This is in addition to all other standard Visa credit card perks, including lost luggage reimbursement and roadside assistance.
APMEX’s AutoInvest program lets you set up recurring purchases for metals – just like you would set a regular deposit into your retirement account; this program enables you to:
- Select from a range of metals products to auto-invest in that range in value. For example, you can auto-invest 1 oz silver round coins for $24.99 or 1/4 oz gold coins for $587. The bottom line is that, like all of APMEX’s other products, every budget has an auto-invest option.
- Set frequency of auto-invest – daily, weekly, biweekly, monthly or quarterly.
- Select your payment method.
Speaking of payment methods, APMEX offers several options depending on your needs. You can pay with a check, wire, crypto (including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, and others), credit card, and PayPal. Currently, check and wire payments get a 4.167% discount on the order.
If you’re concerned about the security of your metals investment, APMEX will store it for you in a state-of-the-art secured facility through a subsidiary (Citadel). After your purchase, APMEX will ship it to Citadel, which will route it to one of their secure locations. The storage fee is $15/month or 0.55% of the total metals value/month (whichever is greater). The cost is calculated and charged quarterly.
Since APMEX is a metals dealer, we have to look at the historical returns of the metals to determine if purchasing gold, silver, or other precious metals is a good investment. Annual returns are typically:
- Gold: 10% – 20%
- Silver: 3% – 10%
- Platinum: 4% – 10%
- Palladium: 13%
Strengths and Weaknesses
The sheer size and scope of products that APMEX offers is their most vital selling point, coupled with the ease in which you can purchase metals – as well as the comfort of knowing that you’re buying from a reputable dealer.
It’s challenging to think of many weaknesses of APMEX.
The primary weakness that comes to mind is that the precious metals market can be volatile and unpredictable, but this is not a fault of APMEX.
Also inherent to precious metals is the fluctuation in price. So if you cancel an order, you will not be refunded the total amount if the metal’s market price has fallen between purchase and cancellation time.
This wasn’t our experience, but some reviews say that customer service can be unresponsive, so this is also something to look out for.
Is APMEX legit?
Absolutely. APMEX is one of the few large direct sellers of precious metals to the average investor, and their range of product offerings, in addition to metals sales, reinforces their legitimacy.
How much is shipping?
Orders over $199 ship free; all other others ship for a flat rate of $9.95. All packages are registered and insured so that they may require a signature upon delivery.
APMEX is one of the best options for buying precious metals and building an alternative investment portfolio. You don’t have to deal with shady pawn shops selling uncertified goods, and the range of pricing makes investing accessible to all levels of investors.
The range of products that APMEX offers also makes it great for newer investors who need some help – they also have a tremendous educational resource section.
Click here to get started building a physical, tangible portfolio in precious metals.