The Best Gold-Backed Crypto to Invest in 2024

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Gold-backed crypto, as the name implies, refers to cryptocurrencies that are backed by actual gold reserves.

With gold having been a store of value for thousands of years, it’s no surprise that gold-backed crypto is attracting significant interest from investors in 2024. Let’s take a deeper look into this burgeoning asset class.

What Is Gold-Backed Crypto And How Does it Work?

Gold-Backed Crypto

At its core, gold-backed crypto aims to bring the stability of gold to the digital asset world. Each token of a gold-backed cryptocurrency like Kinesis (KAU) or Paxos Gold (PAXG) is redeemable for a set amount of physical gold held in reserve.

For example, with KAU, each token represents a claim on 1 gram of allocated and audited gold bullion held in secure vaults. Paxos Gold represents ownership of an ounce of London Good Delivery gold bars.

This means that in theory, you could redeem your PAXG or KAU tokens for the underlying physical gold at any time. Of course, in practice, most people hold gold-backed crypto as a digital investment rather than redeeming for physical gold.

But the gold reserves backing these tokens are what provide stability to their price and reduce volatility compared to non-backed cryptos like Bitcoin.

The price of a gold-backed token will generally not fall below the market price of its gold backing.

Which Gold-Backed Cryptocurrencies Are The Most Stable In 2024?

When it comes to stability, a few gold-backed cryptos stand out as leaders based on their large reserves, regulatory compliance, and track records.

  • Paxos Gold (PAXG) – As mentioned, each PAXG token is backed by an ounce of gold held in LBMA accredited vaults. As one of the largest gold-backed cryptocurrencies by market cap, PAXG offers perhaps the most stability with over $400 million in total crypto assets backed by physical gold.
  • Kinesis (KAU) – With over 6,500 kilograms of allocated and insured gold in reserves, Kinesis underpins each KAU token at a 1:1 ratio with physical gold. Kinesis also stands out for its yield program that pays token holders passive income in KAU for holding.
  • Tether Gold (XAUT) – Each XAUT is 100% backed by gold reserves. While not quite as well established as PAXG or KAU, Tether Gold still has impressive reserves behind it in the hundreds of kilograms.

How To Invest In Gold-Backed Crypto Safely?

Gold-Backed Crypto PAXG

Since new crypto investment carries risks, here are some tips for investing safely in gold-backed cryptocurrencies:

  • Research market leaders with large, audited gold reserves like PAXG, KAU and XAUT. Their stability is unmatched.
  • Buy from trusted, regulated exchanges like Coinbase, Binance or the native platforms for each token. Avoid sketchy small exchanges.
  • Dollar cost average by regularly investing small amounts rather than lump sums to reduce volatility risk.
  • Hold for long term – 3+ years. Gold-backed crypto is still a volatility-reducing alternative to gold, not a get-rich-quick scheme.
  • Consider gold-backed stablecoins as part of a balanced portfolio that also includes mainstream cryptos, stocks and other assets. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
  • Store tokens yourself in a secure crypto wallet, not on an exchange, to mitigate hacking risk. Hardware wallets are best.

What Are The Benefits Of Gold-Backed Crypto Over Traditional Gold Investments?

While physical gold offers stability as a safe haven asset, it does have some downsides compared to gold-backed cryptocurrencies:

  • Storage costs: Physical gold requires securing, insuring and protecting from theft. Gold-backed crypto eliminates storage overhead.
  • Liquidity: Selling physical gold takes time and incurs fees. Gold crypto trades like other digital assets with fast liquidity around the clock.
  • Minimums: You need cash to buy gold in minimum units like ounces. With gold-backed crypto, you can invest small dollar amounts.
  • Portability: Gold bars are heavy and must be transported physically. Cryptocurrencies span the globe easily without third parties.
  • Yield potential: Holdings like Kinesis give token holders a yield paid in more gold or crypto, whereas physical gold earns nothing on its own.
  • Accessibility: Gold-backed stablecoins open gold ownership beyond institutions to individual investors around the world.

Tokenized gold through cryptocurrencies like PAXG, KAU and XAUT aims to combine the stability of the yellow metal with the convenience of the digital era.

How Do Gold-Backed Crypto Tokens Maintain Their Value?

Gold-Backed Crypto Tokens

The value of gold-backed crypto stems first from the physical gold reserves used to back each token at a set exchange rate. But there are also supplementary mechanisms at work stabilizing prices:

Over-collateralization – Issuers maintain gold reserves above the 100% backing ratio to account for minor price variances without breaking the 1:1 peg.

Gold price arbitrage – If a token’s market price diverges too far above or below its intrinsic gold value, arbitrage traders step in by exchanging to capture the difference and force a reversion.

Proof of reserves – Frequent independent audits publicly confirm the gold is securely stored as claimed, maintaining investor confidence in the backing.

Decentralized control – No single entity dictates policy, avoiding manipulation risk through community-driven decentralized consensus frameworks.

Smart contracts – Programmatic rules on blockchains automatically manage gold collateral to support prices rather than relying on third parties alone.

By thoughtfully engineering resilient economic models combining these elements, gold-backed cryptos aim to durably link their value directly to the gold bullion underpinning each coin.

What Are The Top Platforms For Trading Gold-Backed Cryptocurrencies?

Once you’ve chosen which gold-backed cryptocurrencies you want to include in your portfolio, your next decision is where to conduct transactions. Here are some of the top exchange and non-custodial platforms:

Coinbase – The largest crypto exchange offers PAX Gold with deep liquidity and easy account setup. Great for beginners.

Gemini – Another regulated US exchange known for security. Gemini Dollar and PAX Gold are top stablecoin choices here.

Kinesis Money – Offers its own gold-backed KAU/KAG coins plus exchange services with additional yield opportunities.

Tibanne Co. – Specializes in physical gold and silver ownership via their TIB tokens traded directly on the platform.

LocalCryptosP2P exchange great for no-KYC coin swaps if you value privacy over regulation. Risks exist though.

Uniswap – Leading decentralized exchange (DEX) suited for more experienced users. Wide variety available.

Always vet platforms carefully based on your jurisdiction, needs and risk tolerance. But the above generally offer trustworthy, feature-rich environments for getting involved in this growing crypto sector.

How Is The Price Of Gold-Backed Crypto Determined?

Gold-Backed Cryptocurrencies

As we’ve covered, the price of gold-backed cryptocurrencies is designed to track the market price of physical gold that backs each token. Some of the specific mechanics include:

  • Live gold price data is sourced from benchmark spot prices on major exchanges like Comex and LBMA.
  • An algorithm sets the crypto price to equal the U.S. dollar gold price divided by the token’s conversion rate in grams or ounces of gold backing each coin.
  • This method ensures minimal premiums over physical gold’s market value, keeping crypto and gold prices very closely aligned.
  • If redemptions occur, the reserves backing outstanding tokens are reduced accordingly to always match 100% (or over 100%) of tokens in circulation.
  • Rarely, during periods of very low liquidity, an exchange may manually set the price within a narrow band around the algorithmic level.

The price of gold-backed cryptocurrencies like PAXG, KAU, and XAUT is computationally determined by tracking live physical gold prices very closely on a near real-time basis. This mechanism is key to maintaining their value stability.

How Do Gold-Backed Cryptocurrencies Comply With International Regulations?

Regulatory hurdles are an ongoing challenge. The top stable options partner with trusted financial institutions like banks, exchanges or vault services.

These partnerships oversee know-your-customer processes and ensure reserves are properly allocated, insured and audited per jurisdiction.

Most trade on regulated crypto exchanges under fiduciary oversight. Transparency into reserves is also prioritized – both Kinesis and PAXG allow live audits.

Compliance bolsters stability and trust for risk-averse investors seeking legally-sound digital gold plays. It’s an aspect to seriously consider.

What Are The Tax Implications Of Investing In Gold-Backed Crypto?

Gold-backed crypto Kinesis gold KAU

 

From a tax perspective, gold-backed cryptocurrencies are typically treated as property rather than currency. This means that any capital gains or losses realized through selling or trading tokens are subject to relevant capital gains tax rates.

It’s important for investors in countries like the US to track purchases, sales and exchange transactions over time to properly report on tax filings. Cost basis should be calculated in the local fiat value at time of purchase. Exchanging one gold-backed token for another is also a taxable event.

Consulting with a financial advisor can help navigate specific tax rules and obligations. Overall though, transparency in transactions makes documenting gold-crypto investments relatively straightforward from a tax documentation standpoint.

How Can Gold-Backed Crypto Be Used As a hedge Against Inflation?

One of gold’s traditional core values is as an inflation hedge. And with inflation now soaring globally, this quality is top of mind for many investors. Gold-backed cryptocurrencies allow participating in that hedge potential through a digital vehicle.

When currencies weaken, gold has historically maintained or grown its purchasing power. The same hedging behavior seems to apply for gold-pegged cryptocurrencies.

During inflationary periods like now, their stability compared to other crypto or falling equities makes them a compelling diversifier for inflation-adjusted returns.

Due to their bullion backing and lower volatility than other digital assets, analysts predict gold-pegged coins like PAXG could see accelerated adoption as an inflation protection strategy for portfolios in 2024 and beyond. Their convenient access only enhances such potential as both a hedge and long-term store of value.

What Are The Best Strategies For Diversifying a Portfolio With Gold-Backed Crypto?

Gold-backed crypto Tether gold XAUT

When adding gold-backed crypto, an approach is to treat it as you would physical gold – a smaller tactical allocation within a broader diversified portfolio. Around 5-10% of total holdings can provide inflation protection without overexposure to commodity risk.

Diversify across token types. While the largest and most liquid like PAXG offer stability, smaller options provide diversity. Combining exchange-traded with direct ownership styles is another method.

Consider cost-averaging purchases made consistently over time instead of attempting to time the market. Automating recurring buys helps accumulate slowly throughout fluctuating prices.

Rebalance periodically to maintain target allocations. Take profits into fiat as gold-backed crypto reaches the upper limits or when profit targets are met. Selling pressure supports market health.

Smart diversification with gold-backed cryptocurrencies as part of a balanced, long-term strategy stands to benefit portfolios in rising inflation environments.

How To Redeem Gold-Backed Crypto Tokens For Physical Gold?

For those seeking tangible gold ownership, redeeming tokens is straightforward. Each project maintains procedures on their websites, but generally require verifying your wallet and identity initially.

Submit a redemption request through an online form, specifying the type of gold preferred whether bars, coins or other. Production and shipping timelines vary by provider (1-4 weeks is typical).

Upon approval, the equivalent amount of gold is withdrawn from reserves and minted or packaged as selected. Proof of shipping follows thereafter with tracking info provided.

Transaction fees usually apply per ounce redeemed and are competitively priced (example rates are $100-150). Wire transfers finalize payment upon request verification and gold delivery.

The process ensures a reliable bridge between physical and digital gold domains. For some, the tangibility of redeemed bullion provides further peace of mind compared to solely owning tokens.

How Can Beginners Start Investing In Gold-Backed Crypto?

Gold-backed crypto invest

  • First, research top providers like our earlier recommendations to evaluate options. Understand each platform’s model, reserve transparency, jurisdictional oversight and tax implications.
  • Establish accounts on reliable crypto exchanges that list your preferred gold-backed tokens. Gemini, Kraken and KuCoin are reputable starting points.
  • Transfer funds from your bank using wire transfers or stablecoin deposits. Avoid keeping large holdings on exchanges long-term for security.
  • Place small limit orders to buy fractions of your selected tokens. Test market orders on low amounts first to understand liquidity and fees.
  • Hold in a personal wallet like Trust Wallet for additional security. Record all transactions meticulously for tax reporting compliance later on.
  • Start with modest positions and dollar cost average additional sums over six months or more. Monitor price behavior, economic factors and individual project developments.

Patience and responsible research lay the best foundation for growing knowledge and successfully investing in this blended asset class of gold and cryptocurrency over the long run.

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