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GoldSilver Central launches e-trading platform for physically-backed bullion

IN a move that would further boost retail investment options in precious metals in Singapore, local bullion dealer GoldSilver Central has launched an electronic trading platform for physically-backed gold, silver and platinum.

This would allow investors to trade 24 hours a day, especially during the New York and London trading hours, and also have the option to take physical delivery of their holdings, said its managing director Brian Lan.

"Clients can trade on the go, on their mobile phone and tablet, and it's a live market," he said. They can choose to take physical delivery of their precious metal holdings by retrieving them from GoldSilver Central.

Currently, the futures and physical precious metal investment options are bifurcated; investors can trade precious metals futures only through brokerages without any option for physical delivery, or buy physical bullion through local dealers.

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"This will be a very powerful tool for precious metals investors, especially people who are looking to trade narrow spreads," said Mr Lan.

The firm created the platform in response to clients looking to profit from volatility in the prices of precious metals, particularly during the London and New York trading hours.

To cater to retail investors, the minimum contract sizes on the electronic platform are kept small, at 1/10 ounce for gold and platinum and five ounces for silver. Full payment has to be made in advance before a trade can be carried out.

The electronic platform also enables investors to put in "buy" and "stop loss" orders, as well as apply charting and analytical features.

Already, business customers such as pawnshops and jewellers which had the opportunity to access the "live" prices on the system have given the dealer positive feedback, Mr Lan told The Business Times. Previously, they would have had to call wholesale bullion dealers to check on the prices.

Singapore Bullion Market Association (SBMA) chief executive Albert Cheng said the innovative platform changes how precious metals are being traditionally traded, and makes bullion trading easier and more convenient.

"This will assist to propel Singapore's prominence as a major hub for precious metals trading and investment, in line with our vision for SBMA," he said.

Annual audits will be made to make sure that customers' holdings are physically backed, said GoldSilver Central, and the physical bullion will be stored with either the company or its storage providers such as Malca Amit.