Can Gold Coins Be Put Into Your Roth IRA?

Putting your retirement nest egg in gold may make sense.

gold eggs image by Chepko Danil from

Gold has been a measurement and standard of value for thousands of years, and is known to hold or increase its value when other investments, such as stocks or bonds, crash in value. For this reason, you may wish to invest part of your retirement assets in gold, through your Roth IRA. Gold-coin IRA investing has restrictions, and will require more effort and planning on your part, but is available as an option if you are committed to its benefits.

Types of Coins

While coins are usually prohibited investments for an IRA, you are allowed to invest in specific gold coins with your IRA. U.S. gold coins minted by the Treasury Department are allowed in 1-ounce, 1/2-ounce, 1/4-ounce and 1/10-ounce denominations of coins. You can also invest in 1-ounce silver coins.


All IRA investments must be overseen by a trustee. To invest in gold coins, you will need an IRA trustee who will make this investment for you. Most traditional sources of IRA accounts, such as banks or brokers, do not offer gold coins as an IRA investment. You will need to find a specific trustee who offers gold coin investing, or a self-directed trustee who will make your IRA investments in the legal investments you choose.


The law requires that the trustee control the investments in the IRA, to be certain the assets are not used outside their tax-exempt or tax-deferred purposes. The trustee you choose will need to provide the physical storage for the gold coins, under his control, either through a safe or bank safe deposit box.

Other Considerations

Your IRA trustee can bill you for administrative expenses to your account. These administrative expenses do not contribute to the maximum allowable IRA contribution for a traditional or Roth account. For example, you are allowed to invest $5,000 per year in a Roth account, and you invest that amount with a trustee in gold coins. The trustee bills you $200 per year for administration and storage of the coins. Your allowable maximum contribution is still $5,000, and is not reduced by the $200. You may be able to deduct the $200 as a miscellaneous itemized expense on Schedule A of your tax return.