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Costco is selling lots of gold; should you be buying? How this gold rush impacts the market

Costco's decision to sell precious metals has brought it golden buzz.

A Wells Fargo report stated that the bank's analysts believe that the warehouse retail giant is selling between $100 million to $200 million in gold per month.

Wells Fargo suggested that the precious metal offering was a way to add value to the company's brand noting that "it's a very low-profit business at best."

"We view the addition of gold/silver as a smart move for Costco, as it only reinforces its value position," the report said.

The buzz around Costco's offering has led to increased interest in investing in the metal, according to Zachary Scott, general manager of Wilshire Coin in Santa Monica, Calif. Scott said that he is seeing customers who are "less than typical" brought in after seeing gold being sold by "a trusted company."

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"It's bringing in new buyers and interest, though not in massive amounts, who have seen the articles around Costco selling gold," Scott said.

How much gold is Costco selling?

Using the estimates from the Wells Fargo report and an approximate price of $2,000 Costco sells between 50,000 and 100,000 ounces of gold per month.

USA TODAY reached out to Costco to inquire about the volume of gold it has sold and did not receive a response.

Gold prices since Costco started selling

After Costco introduced the 1 oz. gold bars to its website last October the spot price of the metal held steady around $2,000 until an upswing that started in February.

The metal made a run at the start of March that stabilized around the $2,175 mark in the middle of the month. Gold is experiencing another breakout that started at the end of March and has continued.

The spot price of the metal was $2,341.35 as of 9 a.m. ET Thursday, April 11.

Should someone buy gold?

A jewellery quarter gold dealer poses with three 1kg gold bullion bars on December 13, 2023 in Birmingham, England.
A jewellery quarter gold dealer poses with three 1kg gold bullion bars on December 13, 2023 in Birmingham, England.

Whether it’s a good time to buy gold depends on various factors, including your investment goals, risk tolerance and time horizon, the broader economic outlook, and forecasts about the gold market.

Historically, many people view gold as a hedge against inflation and currency fluctuations. Others see it as a store of value during economic downturns. At the same time, some may find diversifying a portfolio of stocks and bonds useful, given its low correlation to both assets.

“If you look at gold’s performance historically, it’s the kind of asset that should perform well through uncertainty, as it has done in five out of the last seven recessions,” said Joseph Cavatoni, chief market strategist for North America at the World Gold Council. “For people looking for a store of value and a portfolio diversifier, gold has a strong track record of delivering those qualities.”

Contributing: Tony Dong and Farran Powel USA TODAY Blueprint

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Costco gold sales increase interest in metal but doesn't move market