Goldline International (www.Goldline.com) is one of the oldest retailers of gold and silver coins and other precious metal bullion for collectors and investors. Headquartered in Santa Monica, California, GoldLine traces its history to Deak & Co., a pioneering foreign exchange and gold coin retailer.
History and Services
GoldLine, a subsidiary of Deak & Co., was founded in 1960. It was the largest storefront gold retailer throughout the late 1970s. For more than 50 years, GoldLine International has sold gold, silver, and platinum coins, bullion bars, and bullion coins to investors and collectors.
GoldLine advertises on TV and also sponsors conservative radio talk shows, including The Glenn Beck Program. Many of its customers turn to GoldLine as a result of Beck’s endorsement of the company. GoldLine sells its products over the phone and via the internet. The company also calls past customers when new collectibles arrive, a practice that some former customers consider questionable.
The company sells gold, silver, and platinum coins and bars, in addition to rare and collectible numismatic coins, including pre-1964 U.S. coins containing silver. Purchases may be made by check, credit card, cash, or wire transfer. Due to company policies, the money must be sent first before they can accept any bullion orders, which can make the process slower than with other precious metal sellers.
Complaints and Controversies
GoldLine has been accused of overcharging. Some GoldLine complaints report prices as much as double those found at competing precious metal dealers. Prices are typically at least 50% over the spot price of the precious metal. GoldLine officially has a 35% spread (commission). As a result, spot prices must increase at least 54% in order for the customer to break even.
In 2011, GoldLine was charged with theft and fraud. The official complaint alleged that GoldLine used misleading claims to encourage customers to purchase highly overpriced coins rather than gold bullion. The settlement included refunds totaling 4.5 million dollars to 43 former customers. At the heart of the complaint is the argument that GoldLine profits more from sales of collectible coins than on sales of pure gold or silver bullion. The coins are significantly marked up in price, and customers may find it difficult to resell those coins without taking a loss.
For orders over $1,000, you will need to call GoldLine to talk to an account executive and receive “Investor Pricing,” rather than placing your order through the website. GoldLine does not charge additional fees for purchasing with a credit card, unlike other precious metal dealers. The shipping fees are also much lower, though shipping is notably lower than that experienced with competing online sellers. All shipments are sent fully insured.
Customers are offered secure storage for their coins, if needed. Many customers do choose to store their precious metals with GoldLine, later attempting to resell them to the company for a profit as spot prices increase. GoldLine does offer to buy back any coins purchased from them. However, buyback prices are typically much less than the current sales price of the same coin. Many customers find that they must wait 5 years or more before they are able to resell for a profit.
If buying from GoldLine, know what you are buying, what its current market price is, and the current spot price of the precious metal involved, so that you can determine the mark-up for yourself. Do your own research before discussing option with a GoldLine salesperson.