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Best Silver Bars to Buy for Investors in 2024

Since I started buying silver in 2009, I've learned a lot about which bars are best suited for long-term success. If you’re in the market for the best silver bars to buy, clarity is key. This guide cuts through the complexity, spotlighting top-notch brands like Johnson Matthey and Royal Canadian Mint, and simplifies the choice between cast and minted bars. By the end, you’ll have a firm grasp of which silver bars suit your investment goals, how to evaluate their value, and what storage options are at your disposal.

Key Takeaways

  • Reputable brands like The Royal Mint, Royal Canadian Mint, and Engelhard are among the top picks for investors looking to purchase high-quality and reliable silver bars, with each offering unique designs and varying levels of purity.
  • Investors must choose between cast and minted silver bars, considering aesthetics and long-term value; cast bars feature a unique aesthetic appeal due to their distressed surface, while minted bars are known for their uniform and refined appearance with much more detailed designs.
  • The correct weight and size of silver bars are essential considerations depending on an investor’s budget and storage capabilities, with the most popular options ranging from 1 Troy ounce to 100 Troy ounces; investing in silver bars offers cost advantages over silver coins, notably a lower premium over the silver spot price.

Top Silver Bar Brands for Investment

Silver Bar Sizes

When it comes to investing in the best silver bars, the top-tier brands to consider include:

  • The Royal Mint
  • Royal Canadian Mint
  • Engelhard
  • Johnson Matthey
  • Sunshine Minting
  • Scottsdale Mint
  • SD Bullion Exclusives

These brands have earned their reputation by consistently offering high-quality and reliable products for investors. Why does brand matter? Over the last decade, I've seen several companies that produce silver bars go out of business — and not in a good way. This essentially deteriorates the brand, making it hard to get maximum value when you sell back in the future.

Investing in reputable brands helps secure your future liquidation with the highest and maximum payouts. Let’s delve deeper into these recommended brands.

1. The Royal Mint

Royal Mint Celebration Silver BarRoyal Mint Celebration Silver Bar Reverse

The Royal Mint, or The Original Maker, as they like to call themselves, is the oldest mint in the world. It has been producing precious metal products for more than 1,000 years and is the exclusive producer of precious metals for the United Kingdom.

Located in Wales, England, the Royal Mint produces some of the most popular silver bars on the bullion market today. In the last few years, they released the Britannia Silver bar, which has been a top seller at SD Bullion. We recently introduced Una and the Lion silver bars as well, which showcase the epitome of the Royal Mint’s expertise and creativity.

I was joined on YouTube by the Director of Bullion at the Royal Mint to discuss this series as well as their history. You can watch the video below.

2. Royal Canadian Mint

Royal Canadian Mint Silver Bar

The Royal Canadian Mint (RCM) is another heavyweight in the world of silver bars. Renowned for their high purity, RCM’s silver bars boast .9999 fine silver content, ensuring investors receive the most amount of silver for their investment.

RCM silver bars are not just about purity; they also encapsulate Canadian identity and heritage. With designs featuring the Royal Canadian Mint logo, and the iconic maple leaf, RCM silver bars echo the nation’s heritage. Furthermore, they include advanced security features like serrated edges and a unique serial number, enhancing their appeal among security-conscious investors.

We sell thousands of ounces of Royal Canadian Mint silver bars per year at SD Bullion. The RCM is one of the most recognized brands in all of silver bullion. We had the Royal Canadian Mint on our first-ever in-vault podcast. The YouTube video currently has more than 100,000 views. Watch the interview below, where I get to ask the RCM unfiltered questions.

3. Engelhard

Engelhard Silver Bar

If you’re looking for a silver bar brand with a long-standing reputation, Engelhard is a name that stands out. Renowned for their 100 oz world-class production, Engelhard silver bars have become a standard of value and exchange in the bullion world, underlining their historical prestige in the market.

If you invest in the right silver bars, they can sometimes be semi-collectible. Engelhard has a brand name that people seek out. For this reason, you may have to "pay up" for an Engelhard-branded silver bar. But the good thing is that if you want to sell your Engelhard bar in the future, it should command a higher buyback premium than most generic silver bars on the market today.

4. Johnson Matthey

Johnson Matthey Silver Bar

With over 130 years of experience, Johnson Matthey is a name that resonates with trust and expertise in precious metals craftsmanship. The brand’s long-standing reputation is a testament to its commitment to producing high-quality silver bars, making it a reliable choice for investors.

Johnson Matthey, similar to Engelhard, carries an esteemed name. People trust it because it has been traded for so long. Like the Engelhard, you might have to pay a higher premium upfront. But the brand will cover you in the long run.

5. Sunshine Minting

Sunshine Minting is another reputable name in the silver bar market, recognized for its iconic soaring eagle logo. Offering a range of sizes, Sunshine Minting caters to various investment scales and preferences, making it a versatile choice for both small and large investors.

6. Scottsdale Mint

Scottsdale Silver Stacker Bars

Scottsdale Mint brings a unique product to the table with its stackable silver bars. These bars are designed with unique ridges that facilitate secure stacking and storage, a feature that stands out in the market.

I also hear all the time from customers that Scottsdale Mint produces some of the most beautiful finishes on its silver bars, bringing many creative options to the market. Not only are their stacker bars one-of-a-kind, but their Tombstone bars are a stacker favorite that people love to buy.

7. SD Bullion Exclusives

Proclaim Liberty Silver BarProclaim Liberty Silver Bar Reverse

SD Bullion is the largest independent precious metals bullion retailer in the world. Our brand is synonymous with trust. Over the years, we've brought several popular silver bars to market.

Probably our most popular is the Proclaim Liberty Silver Bar. The bar reminds us of the virtues our great country was founded upon. And we also make sure they are priced at a great rate.

Types of Silver Bars: Cast vs. Minted

Cast vs Minted Silver bars

Once you’ve decided on the brand, the next step is choosing between cast and minted silver bars. Each type has its unique characteristics and appeal. Cast silver bars, produced by pouring melted silver into molds, have a unique, "loaf-like" finish, while minted bars, manufactured by pressing silver blanks between dies, offer a smooth and consistent appearance. Minted bars also allow a much more creative design in the minting process.

Does this really mean anything to the end investor?

Cast Silver Bars

A cast silver bar has a slightly distressed surface, offering a unique aesthetic appeal. Each bar’s distinct look and deeper profile make it a unique piece – no two cast bars are identical. Made from pure silver, these cast bars showcase the metal’s natural beauty.

I've seen these made in several mints. The process is completely different from minted bars. A guy pours pure silver shot into a cup and weighs it. He goes back and forth until he gets the perfect weight. He then adds it into the machine, which melts it, and pours the molten silver into a cast to achieve the desired shape.

Minted Silver Bars

Contrasting the rugged charm of cast bars, a minted silver bar offers a more uniform and refined look.

Minted bars are produced from precisely cut metal strips transformed into bullion bars through a pressing or stamping machine, allowing for detailed, high-quality designs. Some can even feature raised portions of the bar, which adds even more appeal to the design.

Scottsdale Mint Archangel Michael Silver BarScottsdale Mint Archangel Michael Silver Bar Reverse

Scottsdale Mint's Archangel silver bars are a great example of just how much detail and appeal the minting process can give to a silver bar.

Choosing the Right Weight and Size for Your Investment

Choosing the right weight and size for your investment is a crucial step in your silver investment journey. Your budget and storage capabilities will play a significant role in this decision.

Investors with smaller budgets can start with smaller silver bars, while those with larger budgets might opt for larger bars to gain better value per ounce. Popular weights among investors include:

Remember, storage and liquidity are also key considerations. For example, a single one-hundred-ounce silver bar will be much easier to store than a hundred one-ounce silver bars.

What About 1,000 oz Silver Bars?

A lot of our customers are interested in 1,000 ounce silver bars because of the lower premiums. However, do note that these bars are much harder to liquidate if you take delivery of them to your house. And they're very heavy. Trust me, the first time I picked one up, I almost threw my back out.

If you want to invest in 1,000 ounce silver bars and take advantage of their low premiums, then I would highly recommend a depository storage option. That means you won't have to worry about taking delivery. And if you choose SD Bullion's storage option, you won't even have to ship them anywhere!

Benefits of Investing in Silver Bars Over Silver Coins

Benefits of Investing in Silver Bars

At the end of the day, the only real argument for silver bars over silver coins or silver rounds is that bars typically carry a lower premium over the spot price. Many people might say that silver bars are stored more easily. However, silver coins can be stored pretty easily as well since they ship in tubes, and most government-minted silver coins ship in hard plastic monster boxes.

Therefore, purchasing silver bars can be a cost-effective way to increase your silver holdings and diversify your investment portfolio.

Also, holding a large-format silver bar like a kilo (32.15 ounces) or a one-hundred-ounce silver bar is just really cool. I definitely don't get the same wow factor when holding a one-ounce silver coin.

Storage Options for Silver Bars

Silver Bars Storage Options

Once you’ve invested in silver bars, storage becomes a crucial consideration. The two most common options are at home (likely in a safe) or in a precious metals depository. I personally store most of my bulk metals in our depository at SD Bullion. The main reason is that home insurance policies do not cover precious metals loss. So, in the event of fire or theft, the metals would not be covered.

You can take out separate policies for precious metals at your home, but those policies are very expensive. The other option is peace of mind. When I travel or am away from home, I don't have to worry about anything happening to the bulk of my stack since it is securely stored in SD Bullion's depository.

If you opt for a safe. My recommendation is to make sure you can bolt it to the ground and you don't want to go cheap. Once, I bought a cheap safe and then found a video online of someone showing how to easily open it. I was not happy with my purchase.

Some customers use safety deposit boxes. My issue with safe deposit boxes is the hassle of going to the bank if I want to get my metals out or put more gold or silver bullion in. Additionally, I've heard too many horror stories over the years of banks closing and bank customers not able to access their deposit boxes for several months.

Tips for Buying Silver Bullion Bars

  • When buying silver bars, if all you care about is the lowest price possible, then take a look at generic silver bullion bars (sometimes, these bars are called secondary market bars). Those normally carry the lowest premium and give you the most pure silver for your fiat currency. Choose silver bars that will fit YOUR needs;
  • Online dealers will usually offer a greater variety of bullion products and the lowest premiums compared to brick-and-mortar stores;
  • Investing in silver bars is not just about purchasing more silver per dollar invested. A smart investor understands that reputable brands may carry slightly higher premiums, but will be easier to liquidate and also help you fetch higher prices once you decide to liquidate your assets;
  • Long-term investors might opt to invest in larger bars rather than smaller bars. That could be a cost-effective way to save on premiums, especially if you are considering retirement funds.

IRA-Eligible Silver Bars

If you’re considering adding silver bars to your Individual Retirement Account (or Self Directed IRA), it’s important to note that not all of them are eligible. IRA-eligible must adhere to a minimum fineness of .999 and originate from an accredited mint.

While this might seem complicated, don’t let it deter you. You can reach out to an IRA specialist at SD Bullion and we can help you navigate adding physical silver bullion bars to your retirement account.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who has the best silver bars?

The best place to always start is a reputable bullion dealer. Buying silver bars is quite easy. There are a lot of sources to do so. Stick with good brands, like the ones I mentioned above, and make sure the price is competitive. If you do the three things, you shouldn't have an issue. Seasoned investors know this, and you should too: avoid any dealer who does not offer transparent pricing.

Does it matter what silver bars you buy?

Ultimately, it's up to you to decide which silver bar you want to buy. As long as the purity and price are right, you have to choose the bars that you will most enjoy owning. At the end of the day, it's all precious metal.

Can you buy silver bars at a bank?

In the USA, I'm not aware of any banks that sell silver bars. However, if you are in Europe or Asia, there are several banks that deal in silver products and other precious metals.

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Chase Turner
Chase Turner
CEO

Chase has been buying and selling gold, silver and platinum since 2009, when he opened a local gold shop. He fell in love with buying gold and silver bullion after learning how the world monetary system works and has been an avid believer and preacher of hard assets ever since. 

He has worked in various levels and sectors within the precious metals industry and has consulted thousands of precious metals investors on the best way to buy and sell bullion at all levels...

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