Iceland's Costco Selling Gold Bars At Considerable Mark-Up

Iceland’s Costco Selling Gold Bars At Considerable Mark-Up

Published September 4, 2020

Andie Sophia Fontaine
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Costco, the warehouse store known for selling food and household goods and reduced prices, issued a new offer to its members: gold bars, RÚV reports. A look at the prices Costco has asked for the different weights of the bars, and the actual price for the bars directly from the producer, Baird & Co., shows some marked differences in prices.

Costco members are able to buy gold bars from the store in three different weights: 20 grammes, 50 grammes and 100 grammes. The asking price for each at Costco is 224,000 ISK, 550,000 ISK and 1,120,000 ISK respectively. All of these bars sold quickly, and an employee who spoke with RÚV said more would be coming soon.

As can be seen, these bars come from a company called Baird & Co., and their bars are sold on their website. Their prices are offered in GBP. Going by the current exchange rate between GBP and ISK, there is a marked difference in prices between Baird and Costco.

At the time of this writing, the 20 gramme bar on Baird lists for from £984.51; which is currently 181,667.10 ISK. The 50 gramme bar lists for from £2,424.02; which is currently 447,293.26 ISK. The 100 gramme bar lists for from £4,837.79; which is currently 892,695.13 ISK.

As such, the mark-up for these three bars is about 42,333 ISK, 102,707 ISK, and 227,305 ISK, respectively. Neither variations in exchange rates nor shipping costs could explain this mark-up. The per-gramme GBP price for gold can vary widely, even minute to minute, but typically not beyond a range of more than a few GBP over the course of a month. The VAT, however, is included in Costco’s prices for the gold, which does account for some of the markup.

That being the case, if you live in Iceland and are interested in buying gold, your best bet is probably to get it straight from the source.

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