Trade wars. Volatile Markets. Bank fraud. Currencies that only exist on a computer screen. Is your money really safe? Many Americans are asking this question today, and wishing we could return to this country’s original form of saving and spending: gold.
A new debit card taking Europe by storm enables any regular Joe or Jane to protect your wealth by purchasing physical gold, and the good news: The U.S. is getting a piece of the ultimate golden ticket. Insert, Glint Pay.
Yachts International chatted with Glint co-founders Jason Cozens and Ben Davies about the advantages of owning—and spending—gold for yacht owners.
The problem Glint is trying to solve is obvious, says Davies. “Since the last financial crash, central banks have been printing more and more money, which is unsustainable and erodes your savings as the value of paper money falls. By holding gold, you negate that—and protect your hard-earned wealth against the recession many are predicting.” There has never been a better time to own gold, says Cozens. “On average, gold has appreciated by 8 percent per year in the last 50 years. When you consider inflation is currently around 4 percent, the case for gold is clear.”
Glint isn’t just introducing gold as an investment, but as money you can save and spend. “All money can be held as savings or spent for daily needs, or for more discretionary payments such as a vacation or down payment on a boat. It just so happens that gold is one of the best forms of saving over time.”
The attraction to savers is obvious: new parents putting money aside for their kids, building a nest egg for a home or yacht, and mid-career couples can all benefit. However, the merging of gold with Glint’s global digital payments system also means travelers are able to benefit. The app allows you to exchange cash when docking or flying into international destinations. “Our technology automatically converts your gold into the local currency in real time at the point of sale, and the Glint debit card works anywhere Mastercard is accepted,” says Davies. “That means you’ll zip through without the hassle and high fees of foreign currency booths.”
“When foreign exchange companies say there are no fees, 99 percent of the time that is a brazen lie,” says Cozens. “They put an extra margin in the FX quote that they give you, up to 5 percent on average.”
So what does Glint charge? Currently it’s only 1 percent: 0.5 percent when you buy gold, and 0.5 percent when you spend it. There’s also a storage fee of 0.125 percent.
While there’s something retro about paying for groceries in gold, the benefits address very modern problems—notably inflation, which both founders identify as the curse of the modern financial system. “If you hold money in your bank, it’s depreciating,” says Cozens. “Even though official inflation rates are 3 percent to 4 percent, in reality those statistics underestimate our true cost of living. If you are losing 7 percent on your money through inflation, in seven years your money is worthless. It has depreciated by 100 percent.”
If you want to know why gold is so important, just look at the world’s central banks, says Davies. “They all hold huge gold reserves because paper money is too easily manipulated. If people can save in gold and use it as spending money, they’re independent of the systemic risks of the financial system. By using gold, you are safe.”
Safety is paramount for the firm. Glint is regulated by British financial authorities, and every ounce of gold you buy is held in segregated accounts at a tier 1 bank. In the U.S., your accounts are FDIC-insured up to $250,000. With Glint, your Brinks-secured vault in Zurich, Switzerland is 100 percent insured.
Glint is set up so that if there is another financial crash and the world’s banking system does collapse, your gold is safe. Even if Glint itself goes down, your gold can be sent straight to you. And consider this: If there is another crash, gold will likely shoot up in value. It typically rises during times of stress, meaning you could be making a handsome profit when the stock market slides.
THE ULTIMATE SAVINGS
The ability to save with gold has some very useful marine applications. Let’s say you want to retire to the Keys with a fishing boat. Gold is a good option because it’s so steady, says Davies. “If you go to a wealth manager, they can put your money into all kinds of things: equities, bonds, funds, different currencies. But chances are, especially over the last 20 years, you’ve endured a lot of risk and lost a fair chunk. The risk/reward ratio has been poor, and you don’t have as much security as you’d like. If you have a dream, gold is the best way to make it come true.”
In the last 30 years, the value of the dollar has effectively halved; in that time, gold has risen significantly against the dollar, from around $400 to around $1,300 an ounce. That doesn’t make it some wonder investment, says Cozens, it just means gold has kept its value, giving a satisfying certainty to investors wary of tempestuous financial weather.
GET YOUR GOLD
To start saving and spending with America’s original currency, download the app today.