As silver has become more and more discussed in economic and investment forums, many conventional investors may wonder “why should I invest in silver?” This article aims to answer that question by explaining the two primary reasons for investing in silver: to make money on the investment, as well as to protect yourself in event of a financial crisis.

As a Savvy Investment

HSBC has at least 6,600 offices in over 80 countries and territories serving more than 58 million customers. Their headquarters are located in London and they are one of, if not, the largest banking and financial service organizations in the world. HSBC is known for their long history.

They began as a small bank in Hong Kong that opened its doors in 1865 with the goal of providing banking and financial services for people all over the world. People know HSBC—they are the financial institution associated with most all finance and credit industries worldwide.

So why are they buying silver bullions in throngs? As of January of 2013, the financial conglomerate had acquired $876 million dollars worth of silver bullion. Their source for silver bullion is typically KGHM, one of the largest silver producers in the world.

There has to be something to the large amounts of silver bullion being bought. Whether the large arms of HSBC or one person who wants to diversify and secure their financial portfolio, silver bullion investment is on the rise.

Gold has always led the market for precious metal investment, but silver is as much as 97% less expensive than gold making the gold market worth more. Still silver bullion is thought to be easier to buy due to the cost being less when buying in large quantities and many people, including survivalists, believe silver bullion and junk silver will be the easiest metal to use for buying and selling goods should the financial climate break apart.

Silver bullion comes in sizes as small as one ounce and up to 100 ounces. Smaller increments of silver bars and bullion are easier to store and barter with. Junk silver, silver coins that were minted before 1965 that includes nickels, dimes, and half dollars, are 90% silver and worth much more than face value. This silver money will be easy to use if the economy were to collapse completely.

Buying silver bars now is smart and although there are far less gold deposits within the earth, silver supplies are not looked at as being in anger. While gold mining has depleted much of the natural resources, silver will be next to disappear if the demand continues to increase.

All eyes are on the economy and the Obama administration has tremendous demands to improve the economy and retail and job markets. But Americans are waiting with one foot over the start line and are ready to rush toward amassing precious metals such as silver bullion bars if indicators point to a coming economical met down.

There is no certainty in paper currency, bank accounts, stocks and bonds, or money market accounts. Printed statements arrive in the mail touting increased profits and numbers, but from the past market collapses, consumers know at any time—those statements can be wiped clean. Looking into buying and investing in silver bullion bars is a wise decision that takes research and perseverance. It’s never a bad move for financial freedom or diversity.

Protection if SHTF

The acronym SHTF is used in many different applications, but it is most known as “Shit Hits the Fan” and is commonly associated with survivalists and “preppers.” If there were a national disaster where energy sources and electricity either cost outrageous amount or were not available anymore, supply chains were interrupted preventing products to arrive at grocery stores and pharmacies, or other necessary resources were to be cut off from the public, most Americans are said to not be prepared.

During a time of crisis, the more people who are self-sufficient, the better things will progress. Not even the United States government can supply all the needs of the public in a crisis. And this has been proven too often due to national disasters.

One of the most tragic examples is Hurricane Katrina. Many people were trapped on roofs or fleeing on land that was under water and the supplies available were destroyed due to mass destruction. Even those residents who were not flooded out or evacuated had insufficient supplies to support their needs for prolonged periods of time.

The situation was deplorable and the government failed to reach people in time or provide food and water to stranded residents. If more of the people in New Orleans had properly prepared for any situation, less mass hysteria would have occurred. Thus the birth of preppers—those who realize a state of emergency can occur anytime in the present or the future with no warning.

Prepper is a moniker adopted by contemporary individuals who understand how fragile the American infrastructure is. They choose to prepare in all necessary areas so if the system does break apart, they can hunker down or travel with supplies and money to not only provide for their needs and their family’s needs, but to take the burden off other emergency agencies attending to citizens in need.

Part of preparing is proper food and water supplies, important paperwork stored in waterproof containers, medical supplies and prescriptions, and possibly—a source of money that can easily be used in an economical collapse.

Options for money if the financial infrastructure were to collapse are gold and silver bullion. Having a supply of bullion bars, coins, ingots, or nuggets allows for buying and selling with a proven pure precious metal that has no restraints on its value. Silver bars and rounds, including junk silver, are even more flexible. Gold is harder to use if the increments are worth too much to divide and it would be difficult if not impossible to melt it down to form smaller values.

Junk silver is a great resource to obtain and easy to store. These are silver coins that have a value based solely on the silver content of 90% versus the numismatic or collectable value of other silver coins. Junk silver is inexpensive to buy and easily divided for use in an emergency. Junk silver includes silver coins such as dimes, quarters, and half dollars that were minted by the United States Mint prior to 1964 contain 90% silver.