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Fidelity is among the biggest trading and investment platforms in the world. They have tons of assets spanning all different kinds of investment. Not only do they serve people in the US, but they also serve people all over the globe.
So can you get a gold IRA with Fidelity? The short answer is yes. But the longer answer is that there are some major restrictions and drawbacks to Fidelity's offerings. Here's what you need to know, along with a few key alternatives to try instead.
If you are looking to get started investing in precious metals right away checkout our top companies list. We did hundreds of hours of research and testing to find the top companies for this year...
Purchasing Precious Metals
There is a section on the Fidelity website that discusses the purchase of precious metals. You can buy gold, silver, palladium, and platinum. Investors can buy these metals as a part of their portfolio diversification. However, there are some limitations.
The website notes that there are historic trends in which gold and silver do well when the economy is struggling. They also tend to spike in price during periods of high inflation. For people in the US, both of those factors have seemed like a constant worry these past few years.
In order to make a purchase of precious metals, you must meet Fidelity's order minimum of $2,500. There does not appear to be a maximum investment cap. You can order in quantities of whole ounces or whole coins, but you cannot order fractional products.
There are limited hours in which to make a purchase. You can buy items from 8 AM to 3 PM Eastern Time. However, the online market will be closed outside of these hours. That's because the price of precious metals changes from minute to minute while the exchanges are open. Once the exchanges close, there's no way to keep an eye on the price of the metals.
The products on the website are divided based on the type of precious metal. There are gold, silver, palladium, and platinum options available.
Some of the gold products that you can buy include:
The gold bars range in purity from 99.5% to 99.99%, depending on the type and the manufacturer. You have a choice of different sizes including 1 kilogram, 400 ounces, 1 ounce, 5 ounces, 10 ounces, or 100 ounces.
The silver products include:
All of the silver bars are 99.9% pure and range in size. You can pick 1 ounce, 10 ounce, 100 ounces, or 1,000 ounces. As you can see, the silver coins are much more limited in comparison to the gold coins. Our alternative company suggestions have much more in terms of diverse silver inventory.
The platinum products include:
All of the bars are 99.95% pure, no matter which manufacturer or refinery they come from.
The only palladium coin available is a Canadian Maple Leaf in a one ounce size. It's possible that the US Mint does not create palladium coins, or that they're simply difficult to find. There are palladium bars available in three sizes: one ounce, 10 ounces, and 100 ounces. Each of the bars is 99.95% pure, making it eligible to keep in an IRA.
IRA Eligible Products
Even though many of the coins and products offered meet the correct purity requirements for the IRS, Fidelity notes that they have restrictions on their IRAs. Only a few products can be kept in a Fidelity IRA using their retirement services.
You can put silver, gold, or platinum American Eagles into a Fidelity IRA. You can also put a Gold American Buffalo into the account. But the only other products available are the bullion bars. You won't be able to put coins from other mints into a Fidelity IRA even if they meet IRS standards.
Our alternative companies allow you to invest a much wider range of products into your account. However, they do still need to comply with all of the federal rules. Not every item in their inventory will be eligible for an IRA. It's important to check the eligibility or ask a company representative to make sure you're getting what you want.
Fidelity also notes that there are multiple economic factors that might affect the price of your precious metals. For example, stock market fluctuations can cause the price to skyrocket. The same is true of real inflation and anticipated inflation. Precious metals also increase in value when there is industrial demand for them.
Fidelity mentions that interest in collecting precious metals can drive the prices up. But it's important to note that you can't legally hold numismatic collectibles in your retirement account. Bullion is less speculative, so there's less chance of the price being affected by collectors. That said, there's still a possibility that this will factor in.
Other Fidelity Investments
Fidelity notes that there are ways to invest in the precious metals industry without buying precious metals themselves. Since they are such a large investment company, they have a huge number of options available.
One example is to buy a gold ETF. These funds invest in companies that produce gold or refine it. Many mutual funds have a variety of companies that they invest in, which makes them more diverse than a precious metals investment alone. In addition, these investments can pay dividends.
The drawback is that mutual funds are subject to the same market whims as the rest of the economy. If the economy suffers, your mutual fund might also suffer. Not only that, but the fund will only function as long as it is propped up by other investors.
There are transparent fees listed on the Fidelity website if you want to use their online marketplace to buy or sell precious metals. For IRAs, the minimum purchase is $1,000. For non-IRAs, the minimum purchase is $2,500. It's important to note that these fees are based around non-IRA investments.
Fidelity uses percentage-based fees, which means that you'll pay a percentage of the total purchase. There are different fees for buying and selling. The percentage changes depending on the amount being bought.
When you're buying up to $10,000 worth of precious metals, you'll pay 2.9% of the gross in fees. Between $10,000 and $50,000, you pay 2.5% instead. From $50,000 to $100,000, you pay 1.98%. And once you pass the $100,000 mark, you only pay a fee of 0.99%.
When you're selling up to $50,000 worth of precious metals, you'll pay 2% in a transaction fee. Between $50,000 and $250,000, there's a transaction fee of 1%. After you pass that $250,000 mark, the fee drops to 0.75% of the transaction.
This can add up pretty quickly if you're investing a great deal in precious metals. There are other companies that use flat fees instead. Rather than taking a percentage of your purchase, they just charge one fee for a wire transfer or for the transaction.
The same goes for storage and custodianship. There are custodians and storage facilities that will charge flat fees instead of percentages. So no matter how much money you make, you always know exactly what you can expect to pay every year to keep your account open.
Our Top Alternatives
Fidelity may have a small selection of bullion available, but there are quite a few drawbacks to their approach. They charge fees as a percentage of your total no matter whether you're buying or selling. They will only put American Eagle coins into an IRA, even if other coins are eligible. And they will only trade during EST business hours because of the fluctuating market prices.
All of our top alternatives are much easier to work with. Instead of being massive investment companies with hugely diverse offerings, each of these companies focuses on precious metals. They sell a variety of high quality items and help people with the setup paperwork for the IRA.
In addition, all of our top alternatives have great reviews. They have received awards and celebrity sponsorships, and there have been hundreds of customers who have left positive feedback. On the rare occasion that a complaint is filed, the company immediately takes action and helps to resolve the situation for the customer.
Goldco is a top industry leader for a reason. Though they aren't the first gold IRA company to exist, they set the standard. Since they focus exclusively on gold and silver IRAs, they have the process streamlined to a science. With Goldco, things that would take hours alone only take about fifteen minutes.
Goldco's pricing is also very reasonable. It costs $50 to set up your account, which also involves your representative making all your phone calls for you. Then the custodian fee is $80 while storage is $100 per year. If you invest enough, Goldco will waive those fees for the first year entirely.
Augusta Precious Metals is another top industry leader. Despite their high investment minimums, they have gained a loyal following in the thousands. The company works individually with each client to make sure that they understand the risks and benefits of their choices. Ideally, every Augusta customer will feel as though they've made the perfect choice for their future.
Augusta provides a lifetime of ongoing customer support, which even includes market insights. If you want someone who can warn you when your retirement holdings are in danger, this is the company to do it. There are even webinars available for free before you buy anything.
American Hartford Gold is often found through their advertising on television. But the company has also grown through word of mouth. The vast majority of past customers have left good reviews and say that they'd happily recommend AHG to their family and friends.
There aren't any minimums or additional fees to get started, so you can use their IRA services no matter how much you have to invest. So if the $1,000 investment threshold from Fidelity seemed more doable than Goldco or Augusta's, then you're in luck. AHG totally has you covered.
Fidelity is among the biggest investment companies on the planet. Not only do they have assets for retirement, but they also have a range of marketplace options that you can buy with cash. They will let you buy precious metals for an IRA, but there are some major restrictions.
For example, the only coins that you can put in a Fidelity IRA are American Eagles. Bullion bars are available in a range of sizes, but if you want other coins specifically, you're out of luck.
In addition, there are fees charged as a percentage of your entire purchase when you buy metals on the marketplace. The same is true if you want to sell those metals later. Companies like Goldco and American Hartford Gold don't heap extra transaction fees on you, and they use a flat fee structure overall.
Though you can use Fidelity's services to secure a gold IRA, we don't recommend it. Our top alternative pick is Goldco. They focus exclusively on precious metals IRAs, so they know how to help you with your needs. You'll have one account representative who will find out about your goals and make the best recommendations based on your priorities.