Nations around the world embraced gold and silver as a store of wealth and a medium of international exchange. Individuals have sought to possess precious metals as insurance against the day-to-day uncertainties of paper money. Gold, silver, platinum and palladium constitute the majority of trading in precious metals.
Trading in precious metal futures market or spot market in a speculative manner provides an important alternative to traditional means of investing in precious metals such as gold bullion, coins, and mining stocks, and where substantial profits, as well as losses can be made. Trading contracts in precious metals also provide valuable trading tools for commercial producers and the users of these metals.
Precious metals are traded on the futures and spot markets in contracts (a contract of gold is 100oz while a contract of silver is 5000oz).