Monex Precious Metals Review

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Monex Precious Metals, also operating under the name Monex Depository Company, is a precious metals company that has been established since 1987. It was founded by a man who already had twenty years of experience in the precious metals industry. According to the company, most of its business comes from repeat customers and referrals.

But when you dig deeper into Monex's history and reviews, there are quite a few concerning red flags. Here's what you should know before you get started with your investment.

  • Product Type: Precious Metals
  • Owner: Louis Carabini
  • Rating: 1.0/5

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About Monex Precious Metals

Monex Precious Metals Review

Monex Precious Metals is a family-owned business that is operated by three generations of the company founder's family. Prior to its official incorporation in 1987, the company had been in operation for fourteen years. More than 20 percent of the company's employees have been part of the business for at least a decade.

Monex sells precious metals in bar and coin form. Not all of these products meet the eligibility requirements for storage in an IRA, and the company does not appear to have dedicated IRA services.

In the past, Monex would give discounted prices to clients who used Atlas Accounts. The Atlas trading platform was meant to connect people to precious metals at lower than the usual market cost.

But the Atlas program was shut down by the government after allegations of fraud came up. It was determined that the trading platform was running illegally due to not being licensed. It's unclear whether any of the people who complained about being defrauded are being paid restitution.

There are some IRA services offered, but the company does not streamline the process. Instead, it connects you to a third party custodian. This custodian does the work of opening your account and filing the appropriate paperwork. They also don't recommend specific custodians on their website, but they claim that they can connect you to one if you call.

It's usually better to work with an IRA company that specializes in these investments. That way, they can contact your custodian for you. They can also help you compare the prices and policies of different custodians and depositories.

The custodians that Monex uses are more likely to use sliding scale fees than flat fees. Sliding scale fees increase as you add more value to your account. By comparison, flat fees remain the same no matter how much wealth you manage to accrue.

Buying from Monex

Monex Precious Metals Review

According to the Monex website, the company's representatives will talk to you about the risks and benefits of purchasing gold bullion. They can make recommendations for the best physical gold products to buy. Tangible assets like precious metals are just one part of a healthy, balanced portfolio.

There are mixed customer reviews regarding the company representatives. Some say that the reps are knowledgeable and helpful. Others say that the reps are condescending, pushy, and unnecessarily confusing.

Gold Items

Monex Precious Metals Review

You can purchase gold coins and bars through the company. The bars are available in weights that range from 1 to 400 ounces. You also have the option to purchase gold ingots, which meet the highest industry standards for gold purity.

The prices of gold bars are marked up to some degree in order to cover the company's costs. They do not say how high the prices are marked up, so you should always compare your offer to the market value.

Gold coins that are issued by the government can also be purchased. Gold bullion coins are available in weights of 1, 1/2, 1/4, or 1/10 ounce.

Monex states that investors will be expected to pay an assay fee when they buy gold bullion through the company. This isn't the case for every other precious metals dealer. In addition, they don't have a whole lot of transparency regarding how high this assay fee is.

Sale Program

Monex Precious Metals Review

You have the option to sell precious metals to Monex. To do this, you'll first call the company and talk to a representative about your holdings. They will give you a quote for the potential price. If you accept the price, they will give you instructions for sending the metal to the company.

When the items are received, you'll be contacted and told how much you're being paid. The money should be sent shortly afterward.

Is Monex Precious Metals a Scam?

Monex Precious Metals Review

Monex Precious Metals appears to be a legitimate business. It has been part of the precious metals industry for decades, and the management says that most business comes from repeat customers. However, there are multiple negative reviews from past customers, as well as an alert set out by the Better Business Bureau.

On Yelp, the company has a rating of just 2.5 out of 5 stars with 25 total reviews. The Better Business Bureau has not accredited the business and gives them an A-. There have been three official complaints filed with the BBB in the past year alone, along with four 1 star customer reviews.

This seems to indicate that many consumers have had an extremely negative experience using the company.

BBB Alert

Monex Precious Metals Review

The BBB posts alerts when companies have been involved in serious government proceedings. One of these alerts was issued because the company was investigated by the Commodity Futures Tradition Commission.

In July of 2021, an injunction was affirmed against Monex Precious Metals and its founder. This injunction was a settlement of allegations that were made against the company. There were claims that multiple thousands of people were defrauded of millions upon millions of dollars. In addition, it was claimed that illegal transactions were taking place.

The action stated that the business was required to close the Atlas program. This trading platform had not been registered, but it was being used to facilitate the sale of precious metals. There is no information about whether the business will pay restitution to the people who were allegedly defrauded.

Consumer Complaints

Monex Precious Metals Review

Let's take a look at a few of the complaints filed with the BBB and posted on Yelp.

One BBB complaint is from March of 2021. The customer stated that at the end of January, they did a bank wire transfer to the company to purchase precious metals. The company confirmed receipt of the money, and the metals were supposed to arrive within the next few days.

When the metals didn't arrive on time, the customer called to speak with a representative. The representative said that he'd call back, but he didn't. The person called again the next day and was told they'd be called back, but once again they weren't.

The company replied to say that the shipments were sent out not long after the complaint was filed, and the customer had confirmed their receipt of the shipments.

Another complaint came from someone who said that they sold their gold coins to the company. They mailed the coins after finalizing the sale over the phone. The customer was given two notices that confirmed the sale. They were assured that their check would be coming in the mail.

The customer had previously sold precious metals to the company without a problem. But this time, more than three weeks went by without the check arriving. The customer sent an email requesting their check and got no response. After waiting another five weeks, the customer called and spoke to a different representative, who blamed the first representative for the issue.

This new representative promised that the check was being sent out. A week went by. The customer called again and was told the same thing. Once again, time went by without any check arriving. The customer then sent an email to the company informing them that they were filing a BBB complaint and making a report with the local police for fraud.

This complaint has been marked as resolved by the complainant, but there is no information about what the resolution entailed.

One of the Yelp reviews came from someone who said that they actually were happy with the customer service they received. They said that the representative they worked with was very knowledgeable and professional. But when the customer's purchase arrived, there were problems with the coins.

The biggest problem is that the coins appeared to be stamped with a watermark. The customer felt that if they had spent so much money on the purchase, they should have been able to trust the company to send them exactly what they bought.

Pros & Cons of Monex Precious Metals

Pros

  • Decades of experience in the precious metals industry.

Cons

  • Extremely negative customer reviews online across multiple platforms.
  • 3 complaints with the BBB within the last year.
  • Government action has been taken regarding allegations of fraud and illegal trading.

Final Thoughts

Monex Precious Metals is a legitimate company that has been part of the precious metals industry for decades. The company founder has over 40 years of experience with the industry. With all of that in mind, they should be an excellent company to work with. But there are some major red flags.

Customers have left extremely negative reviews on Yelp, Trustpilot, and the Better Business Bureau. They have criticized every aspect of the business from the customer service to the shipping time to the quality of the items received. The business seems to be very inconsistent in their items, and the support staff has been reported to be unhelpful in resolving issues.

Perhaps most concerningly, the BBB has issued an alert due to government action taken against the business. They were forced to shut down their Atlas trading platform, which was an unregistered and illegal platform used to trade precious metals. Consumers alleged that the company had defrauded them out of several hundred million dollars, but those allegations have not been proven.

We don't recommend working with a company that has so many negative reviews, especially with the BBB alert in mind. It doesn't seem like the company has the best interests of its customers at heart. There are much better precious metals dealers that have robust services and great online feedback instead.

Overall, we believe that there is a better option when it comes to your investment.

The above company is our top recommendation after doing extensive research. Feel free to keep doing your own research, or you can visit Monex Precious Metals below!

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