Over the last decade, demand for SPDR Gold Shares (NYSE:GLD)-investments has increased substantially – both in developed countries as well as emerging markets like China or India. In 2011, total investment demand for gold amounted to more than US$ 80bn. The majority of demand for gold investments flows into physical gold in the form of bars or coins. While demand for gold securities also grew strongly – especially since new vehicles like Gold ETF were introduced from around 2002 on – physical gold investments increased even stronger.

For private investors, physical gold holdings were traditionally quite difficult to handle. For example, safe transportation and storage were complex to arrange. Since 2000, a range of new offerings appeared: Vaulted Gold, i.e. professionally stored physical gold bullion, became accessible to private investors. Unlike with gold backed securities, investors in Vaulted Gold get outright ownership of their gold holdings. Trustworthy providers of Vaulted Gold offer independent storage by professional vault operators, allow regular audits and inspections of the gold holdings and keep them fully insured. Private investors have a delivery option, i.e. they can request delivery of their gold holdings.

Today, tow leading providers of Vaulted Gold – BullionVault and GoldMoney – store gold worth more than US$2.5 billion for their customers. Several banks and financial services institutions recently started to offer Vaulted Gold to private investors.

Vaulted Gold InfographicFrom: Trustable Gold