Research - 13.05.2019 - 00:00

Precious metal atlas – Swiss people like to invest in gold

Gold is among Swiss people’s favourite forms of investment. The most popular one is real estate (mentioned by 53% of the interviewees), but gold comes a close second with 48%, followed by shares (30%), funds (25%) and current and savings accounts (24%). Platinum occupies ninth place, silver is in 13th place. This has been revealed by the latest survey conducted by the Institute of Retail Management of the University of St.Gallen (IRM-HSG) in cooperation with the precious metal trader philoro SCHWEIZ AG in April 2019.

13 May 2019. Low interest rates, the fading attraction of classic forms of saving such as the savings account, as well as economic and political uncertainties are the hallmarks of today’s financial market. Against this background, investors increasingly rely on physical precious metals since this form of investment is regarded as inflation-proof and as an iron ration in times of crisis. The vaults of the Swiss National Bank (SNB) are home to approx. 1,040 tonnes of gold, which is tantamount to about 127 grams per inhabitant. Measured in terms of per capita "gold density", Switzerland heads the international league.

One in five Swiss nationals plans to invest in precious metals

Almost two thirds of the Swiss population consider precious metals to be a sensible form of investment (60.5%). Almost one in five Swiss nationals is even planning to invest in precious metals in the coming twelve months (19.2%). In comparison with a similar study that was conducted by the precious metal trader philoro in Germany in 2016, the Swiss survey values are relatively high: in Germany, only 32% of the interviewees regarded precious metals as a sensible investment. Only approx. 4% of the German interviewees were planning to actually invest in precious metals in 2016.

What can also be observed in Switzerland is the fact that the attractiveness of precious metals, future investment intentions, amounts scheduled for investment and the quota of interviewees who invested in precious metals in the past rises in proportion to the increase in net household income. In Switzerland, the share of investments in precious metals already made in the past is a considerable average of 26.4%.

People’s principal banks are the providers of choice

With an average 61.9% of mentions, people’s principal banks are the preferred provider for purchases of precious metals in all language regions, age groups and income categories in Switzerland. Second place is occupied by precious metal traders with stationary businesses (19.1%) followed by other banks (8.8%) and online precious metal traders (8.2%). Physical precious metals are regarded as a long-term investment by 51% of the Swiss interviewees. Further important reasons for investment in precious metals are the desire for security (39%), stability (30%), wealth creation (25%) and profit (17%).

For the purposes of the survey, 2,300 adults from German-, French- and Italian-speaking Switzerland were interviewed about their attitude towards physical precious metals such as gold, silver, platinum and palladium. The survey was conducted by Prof. Dr. Johannes Bauer, Assistant Professor of Marketing, Prof. Dr. Thomas Rudolph, Director of the Institute of Retail Management, and Kathrin Neumüller, research assistant and Ph.D. student at the University of St.Gallen, in cooperation with the global precious metal trader philoro.

The Swiss precious metal atlas that was generated on the basis of this survey answers the following questions, among others: What do Swiss consumers think about precious metals as a form of investment? How many interviewees have already invested in precious metals or are planning to do so? Where do they purchase precious metals, and how much are they prepared to invest?

"The Swiss precious metals atlas is unique as it constitutes the first representative nationwide study of Swiss consumers’ attitude towards physical precious metals as a form of investment," says Christian Brenner, CEO of philoro SCHWEIZ AG.

Image: Adobe Stock/Björn Wylezich