One of the most common pieces of advice in the gold-bug world is to get as much metal as possible for your money, which means buying bullion rather than rare (i.e., numismatic or collectible) coins. The latter weren’t confiscated in 1934, but — so goes this line of thinking — that’s not an issue this time around because gold isn’t legal tender and therefore doesn’t have to be confiscated for the government to devalue the currency.
But today differs from 1934 in another way that might offset bullion’s advantage over collectibles: Governments around the world, after decades of overspending and overborrowing, are desperate for tax revenues and are actively trying to uncover untapped stores of wealth. That’s why the rules governing Americans’ offshore accounts, for instance, keep getting stricter. And why France and several other countries have lowered the allowable size of cash transactions.