UPMA or Bitgold

By Tbil2 on Thu, Feb 18, 2016 - 10:58pm

I would like to hear some thoughts on Bitgold and UPMA. 


Russellp's picture
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Joined: Nov 26 2015
Posts: 6
I would as well.

Anyone have any input on UPMA?

Looks very interesting.

reflector's picture
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Joined: Aug 20 2011
Posts: 279

i've never heard of upma before.

but a couple quick comments on bitgold:

1) it has nothing to do with bitcoin except the "bit" in the title, it is not blockchain-based.

2) it is basically a new incarnation of goldmoney.com, which is/was run by james turk, whom i respect based on what i know of him and have heard of his interviews, and has eric sprott as a major investor in the project. i don't have a link but if you're interested you should be able to find a video on youtube from 2015, where james turk talks about how he initially decided to merge goldmoney with bitgold with sprott's approval.


Tbil2's picture
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Posts: 4
Ease of use

I like both platforms. Pretty easy to use and gives you a few more ways to save in gold and silver. Bitgold continues to expand its business component to allow for settling business to business and person to person payments. Bitgold you need to be aware that you have tax implications for potential loss or gains but they do have a tax tool that can help. The option to use a bitgold debit is handy.

UMPA also has potential tax implications but allows for storage of gold and silver via their unique specie transactions. I encourage you to visit both sites. UMPA does also offer Debit and American Express transactions settled in gold. Ease account set up UMPA as the personal information requirements are less.

aldo1's picture
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do adam or chris own any bitgold / goldmoney.com or upma?

any updates on upma or goldmoney.com  (bitgold)?

anybody have accounts or insight(s).

many thanks:) !

Xerxes's picture
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Posts: 3
I JUST read an article about this.

They throw AnthemVault in the comparison as well. I'm essentially copy/pasting but this was published on Silverstackers.

Quick Version: UPMA is cheaper for large accounts with some movement. Goldmoney is better for small accounts with almost no movement.


There is some debate within my circle of friends when it comes to these three vaulting services. The companies are UPMA (United Precious Metals Association), Goldmoney, and AnthemVault. I'm going to compare the three against each other in terms of pricing only. If this blog gets attention then I may compare other aspects of these companies business models in future posts.


Goldmoney charges 1% in and 1% out. They offer a debit card to do this. They took this business model when they merged with Bitgold. A person depositing $10,000 one time will have $9,900 in their account (assuming no price movement). If they deposit $1,000 each month, and then use the account as a slush fund that they pull $1,000 back from every month then they will pay 1% both times. Vaulting is uniquely free with Goldmoney though.

Total Cost: $220 (1% of total deposits) + $120 (1% of total withdrawals), $0 for vaulting, for a grand total of $340 in one year.

Pros: No Vaulting or Membership Costs, has a close-loop payment system, Debit Card
Cons: You pay heavily for any movement

AnthemVault sells gold for spot price and buys it back for 1%. This is half the cost of Goldmoney. A person depositing $10,000 can sell it back for $9,900 (assuming no price movement).  If they deposit $1,000 each month, then use their account as a slush fund that they pull $1,000 back from every month then they will pay 1% once. Vaulting over the year costs 0.36% They don't get hit with the one percent fee twice though.

Total Cost: $120 (1% of total deposits sold, the $10,000 is still there remember) + $40 in vaulting fees (based off an average account balance of $11,000) for a grand total of $160 in one year.

Pros: Low Overall Costs (half of Goldmoney)
Cons: No Debit Card, No close-loop payment system, More limited services overall

UPMA (United Precious Metals Association) offers a 0% buy/sell spread. This means that they don't charge anything for turning gold back into cash. A person depositing $10,000 can sell it back for $10,000 (assuming no price movement). If they deposit $1,000 each month, then use their account as a slush fund that they pull $1,000 back from every month then they will pay 0% for the movement. There is a membership fee of $2.50 per month (which covers the first two coins) and then an additional vaulting/insurance fee of 25 cents per coin per month.

Total Cost: $0 for the spread/movement, $44 in vaulting fees (based on an average account balance of $11,000) for a grand total of $44 in one year.

Pros: Zero/Buy Sell Spread, Debit Card, close-looped payment system
Cons: Only service with a flat membership fee of $2.50 making it unattractive for accounts worth less than $2,000. 


Goldmoney costs money every time you move it in or out. If you let $1,000 sit there for 10 years though it will do better here than the other two services. This is the largest company of the three to my knowledge.

AnthemVault seems to be the middle of the road company. Their vaulting fees are nearly identical to UPMA, minus the membership fee. This is a great account if you just have $1,000 and don't care to have a debit card or if you don't want to pay someone else in gold.

UPMA is by far the least expensive due to zero/buy sell spreads under the above scenario. They are also the worst for a $1,000 account with little movement. They shine when used for working capital, or as a back-up highly liquid savings account.

If you find this helpful or see an obvious error then please let me know in the comments. I tried my best to be fair to each company by pointing out pros and cons on all of them. They all appear to be good legitimate services.

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