Precious metals are defined as rare, naturally occurring, metallic elements that have high economic value. In general they are less reactive than most elements, and tend to be ductile and have a high luster.

In the past, precious metals were important because they were used as currency. In the present day, such metals are viewed as valuable because of their investment and industrial uses.

The best-known precious metals are gold and silver, and it’s not hard to see why. For its part, gold is a key material for jewelry, and is also used as a store of wealth by investors around the world. Indeed, many believe that it’s superior to any and all paper currencies.

Silver is also used as a store of wealth and in jewelry, but unlike gold it’s also subject to a fair amount of industrial demand. In other words, the metal is not only bought by investors, but also by manufacturers looking to use it for different applications. Those applications are incredibly varied — silver is used in devices like batteries and catalysts, but it’s also used in medicine and in the automotive industry.

Sister metals platinum and palladium are also popular precious metals. Like silver and gold, both metals are used in jewelry and are bought by investors.

However, what they’re perhaps best known for is their use in the automotive industry. Both are used in catalytic converters, with palladium being used in catalytic converters for gasoline engines, and platinum being used in catalytic converters for diesel engines. That said, palladium is starting to move in on platinum’s market share — it is cheaper than platinum and manufacturers are beginning to substitute it for platinum when possible.

For investors looking to move into the precious metals space, there’s perhaps no time like the present. Prices for gold, silver, platinum and palladium are currently low, and many market watchers believe that those low prices present a buying opportunity. And luckily, those interested in the metals have myriad options for investing, from stocks to ETFs to physically purchasing the metals. All it takes is some research to determine which is the best fit.

As one final note, it’s worth being aware that while gold, silver, platinum and palladium are undeniably the most popular precious metals, other precious metals do exist. Rhodium and rhenium are two fairly common ones, with rarer examples being germanium and beryllium.

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Gold Mine Development
Gold Production/Mining
Gold Project Generators
Gold Prospecting and Exploration
Gold Resource Definition/Pre Feasibility
Gold Resource Expansion/Feasibility Study/PEA
Silver $0-15m
Silver $15-50m
Silver $250m+
Silver $50-250m

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