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Public Bank Gold Investment Account Review

Public Bank Gold Investment Account passbook.
Public Bank Gold Investment Account passbook

For this post, I will be sharing my Public Bank Gold Investment Account review.

Table of Contents

Public Bank Gold Investment Account Review

First and foremost, this is not a paid or sponsored post. This review is purely based on my experience of investing in the Public Bank Gold Investment Account (aka GIA) since 2008.

In this post, I will share all I know about Public Bank Gold Investment account.

Why do I invest in gold?

What is gold to you?

To me, gold is:

  • A better form of money because paper money is prone to manipulation.
  • Respected throughout the world ever since the ancient Egypt age.
  • Highly valuable because it is rare with a limited supply on Earth.
  • Something precious for its beautiful lustre and versatility, thus it is highly sought after as jewellery.
  • Among the most useful metals. Due to gold’s unique chemical properties, it is also used for industrial and medical processes.

Even though some famous and successful investors like Warren Buffett do not favour gold, I still believe there are good reasons to invest in gold.

As such, these are the reasons why I invested in gold:

1. To diversify my investment portfolio

Did you notice that the market moves to gold when the world economy slows down? Because investors know that when the stock market crashes, in most cases gold prices rose.

Thus, having some of my investment in the form of gold ensures me that I still have something safe to hold on to, even during the recession.

The up trending in the gold price, especially in the 2000s, is another big factor to push me to start my first gold investment.

Historical gold price since 1996 showing an up trending pattern.
Historial gold price in Malaysian Ringgit since 1996 from Gold Price.org

From the historical gold price chart above, the gold price increased from around RM32 per gram to RM244 per gram in 26 years.

3. Limited supply but increasing demand

As mentioned earlier, gold has limited supply but increasing demand. This also means that gold holds a future in terms of long-term investment.

4. As a safe financial protection

Every time our Ringgit drops drastically against the US dollar, I feel shaky financially. I know I can’t control the value of Ringgit. But, what I can do is to have a portion of my investment in other assets such as gold or cryptocurrency.

So, I can be more at ease knowing that a portion of my investment is less affected when Ringgit tumbles.

Why did I choose Public Bank Gold Investment Account?

My interest in gold investment started in 2008.

At that time, Public Bank and Maybank were the two local financial institutions offering gold investment accounts.

And these are the reasons why I chose investing through Public Bank Gold Investment account:

  • I want to own gold but am not willing to keep physical gold. So, Public Bank Gold Investment Account offers the alternative option to own my gold without having to keep it physically myself.
  • The reasonable difference between buying and selling price through Public Bank Gold Investment Account.
  • The acceptable terms and conditions to start my gold investment account. Such as low minimum investment and subsequent purchase.
  • I am an existing Public Bank user which makes the process easier such as there is no need to open a savings or current account for the transactions.
  • Reliable support from the Public Bank officer in charge of the gold investment account.

How to invest in Public Bank Gold Investment Account?

Firstly, you will need to open a gold investment account with Public Bank.

Actually, it is just like opening a bank savings or current account. Back in 2008, the process was as below:

  1. Go to your prefered Public Bank branch and tell the customer service you wish to apply for a Gold Investment Account.
  2. Read, fill in and sign on the application form or agreement form.
  3. Inform the officer of the amount of gold you wish to buy.
  4. Make the payment based on the current gold price.
  5. The officer will print the transaction details such as date, amount (in gram), gold price and the total balance on the Gold Investment Account passbook.

As for the sample of the transaction details, you may refer to my sharing of my investment with the Public Bank Gold Investment Account further down below.

Requirements for opening a Public Bank Gold Investment Account

Before you open a Public Bank Gold Investment Account, do take note of the requirements below:

  • An individual investor must be at least 18 years old.
  • The minimum initial purchase is 5 grams. For example, if the bank selling price for the gold when you purchase is RM200.00 per gram, then your minimum initial purchase is RM200.00 x 5 grams, which is RM1,000.00.
  • The minimum subsequent purchase must be at least 1 gram and must be in multiples of 1 gram. What it means here is an investor cannot purchase 1.5 grams or 2.1 grams.
  • An investor needs to maintain a minimum balance of 2 grams in the account.
  • An investor with a gold quantity balance below 10 grams on 31 December each year will be charged a service charge of RM10.
  • For payment, you can use cash, direct debit from your Public Bank current or savings account or using their house cheque.

Other than an individual investor, the Public Bank Gold Investment Account also accepts the application from the below:

  • joint holder.
  • parents opening the account for their children below 18 years old.
  • non-individual such as companies, sole proprietorships, partnerships, societies, clubs and associations.

Do take note that the terms and conditions may change from time to time. For the latest update, you may refer to the Public Bank Gold Investment Account website.

Public Bank eGold Investment Account

Recently, Public Bank online (PBe) announced on its website that the Gold Investing Account opening is available online for PBe users. This is known as Public Bank eGold Investment Account.

So, existing PBe users can easily open a gold investment account online.

Although there are some differences such as no passbook for the eGold Investment Account, I believe this is a great alternative for those who wish to start investing in gold.

My investment in Public Bank Gold Investment Account

Three transaction details on a Public Bank Gold Investment Account passbook, totaling to 50 grams of gold.
My Public Bank Gold Investment passbook

As for my investment in Public Bank Gold Investment Account, these are my purchases:

  • my first purchase in August 2008 of 20 grams at RM98.35 per gram.
  • the second purchase in October 2008 of 10 grams at RM87.42 per gram.
  • the third purchase in January 2011 of 20 grams at RM137.65 per gram.

So, in total, I am holding 50 grams of gold through the Public Bank Gold Investment account. The total purchase amount is RM5,594.20.

Back then, for all my transactions above, I need to personally go to the Public Bank branch and perform the transaction over the counter. Fortunately, the transactions were fast and the service was prompt.

And now I noticed that there is an online gold trading via Public Bank online. This definitely makes the whole buying and selling of gold much easier.

The return on investment of my Public Bank Gold Investment Account

Let’s say I am selling all my gold at RM240 per gram (in September 2022). I will be making a profit of RM6,405.80. And my basic return on investment (ROI) would be 114.5%.

It is worth taking note that the investment time frame is 14 years.

So, what do you think of the 114.5% ROI in 14 years?

Personally, the ROI of 114.5% in 14 years is below my expectation.

Some of you might think that this is a poor investment because you can have better ROI through other investments. But again, this is a gold investment. The ROI is highly affected by the buy and sell timing.

Buy more, sell or hold?

Currently, I am planning to hold the gold in my Public Bank Gold Investment Account.

These are the reason why I am holding it, instead of selling it:

  • I foresee that the gold price will still soar.
  • I feel comfortable having some gold as part of my investments.
  • This is only a small portion of my investment.
  • Low risk and without additional charges as long as I maintain 10 grams of gold in my account.

When the time and budget are right, I am considering buying more to increase my gold investment. Beside Public Bank Gold Investment Account, I am looking at other alternatives as well.

Important notes on investing in Public Bank Gold Investment Account

These are important notes to consider before you start investing in Public Bank Gold Investment Account:

1. Not protected by Perbadanan Insurans Deposit Malaysia (PIDM)

Currently, my Public Bank Gold Investment Account is not eligible for PIDM protection. What it means here is that if something happens to Public Bank, there is no assurance for my gold investment account.

In fact, all gold-related investment products or accounts are not eligible for PIDM protection.

2. Gold prices fluctuate

Based on my observation, the gold price on the Public Bank Gold Investment Account changes a few times a day.

It is best to check the price with the bank officer before you make your purchase.

Final thoughts

Overall, I am ok with the return on investment for my Public Bank Gold Investment Account.

To be honest, I’ve received much better returns from my other investment such as the robo advisor and the cryptocurrency. But, I feel comfortable having a portion of my investment under gold.

Lastly, I hope my review on the Public Bank Gold Investment Account is beneficial for those planning to invest in the gold investment account.

As with other types of investment, investing in gold also carry its own risk. So, invest wisely.

Image Credits

All screenshots by the author

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