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Harrods Starts Selling Gold Bars

BY Boon Koh
Published 16 October 2009

In a move that could only be pulled off by one of the world’s most famous department stores, Harrods of Knightsbridge has started to sell gold bars, ingots, and coins from its new Harrods Bank located in-store.

Although Harrods is probably one of the last places in London where one would expect to buy gold bars from, it is not a surprising move given that the majority of their clients are rich, affluent, and looking for ways to invest and protect their wealth. The exact same target consumer market for gold investments and the perfect customers for gold coins, gold bullion, and gold bars. In addition, apart from gold jewelry shops, there really isn’t any place on the high street where someone can buy or shop for gold bars and coins.

The  Mohamed Al-Fayed owned store was eager to satisfy an emerging but rapidly growing demand from its wealthy customers for a way to profit from the boom in gold prices worldwide. The price of gold had recently topped a high of $1072 per ounce, and shows no sign of stopping its rapid upward trajectory.

HarrodsGoldBullionBar

The gold bars from Harrods will be sold at “market prices”, and are supplied by the prestigious Produits Artistiques Métaux Précieux (PAMP), an organisation based in Switzerland and with vast experience in the gold trade. PAMP Bullion meets the recognized and accepted ‘Good Delivery’ compliance standards, enabling it to be traded worldwide with ease should the rich and wealthy ever need to cash in on their gold bars or coins.

Gold bars and coins will be sold, ranging from weights of 1 gram up to 12.5 kg, which will set you back about £300,000 per bar. However, those looking for silver, diamonds, or platinum are out of luck at the moment, although it is not inconceivable that Harrods will expand its offering to other precious metals in the future.

The store said it was seeing “high transaction values go through” after its first day of sales yesterday. A spokesman said it was catering to the tastes of its typical shopper. “It’s the Harrods customer who might make a serious investment opportunity.”

If you don’t have instant access to your £300,000 sitting in your Swiss or Cayman Island bank account, don’t be disappointed; Harrods will also be selling souvenir chocolate versions of the gold bars for £9.95 at its food hall right around the corner from the Harrods Bank.