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Where to buy gold? Not from Suisse International.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The main reason for me to buy gold is to guard against the inherent problems of fiat currencies which are very flawed. So, having some physical gold, to me, is an insurance. 

All of us need some insurance and having up to 5% of our wealth in the form of gold isn't excessive.

Why not buy gold and receive income from it? 

Yes, that was what some entities out there told some "investors". Unless you do not read the news at all, you would have heard of such cases. 

If you know of other entities which are still saying this, trying to make you part with your money, be afraid. Be very afraid. 

Oh, while you are trembling with fear, do everyone a favour and report these entities to the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

Please don't be like Mr. Louis Tan who put in $40,000 and persuaded his friends to do the same because he would get a better rate for himself if he were to bring in more business for the company.

Mr. Louis Tan is ignorant, greedy, selfish and soon to lose a few friends.

Report these entities to the MAS and you could be saving people like housewife Y.H. Yang who is 53 years old and seem set to lose $2.2 million, her life savings which included money she received after selling her ancestral home in Shanghai.

We had Genneva Gold in 2012 and Gold Guarantee in 2013. Now, we have Suisse International.

Read report: here.
"After we joined, we also brought our friends in because (Suisse) promised to give us better returns and sell us gold at a cheaper rate if we recommended others," said operations manager Louis Tan, 36, who put in $40,000 last June. 

It was easy to convince their friends to join because the company promised them about $1,000 a month, which worked out to a 20 per cent return, for every kilogram of gold they bought.

Remember, scams come in many shapes and sizes. They could be as small and simple as some magic stones but they could also be quite sophisticated and much bigger like oily pods, plots of land which should be profitable or houses which are ecological.  

Ecological? Green is the color of money, isn't it? 

Related post:


Singapore Man of Leisure said...


Sometimes I wonder do people watch the TV news or read newspapers at all?

Its never good to be ignorant in a knowledge-based society...

I think we misuse this word called "friends".

Real friends will not do this to you; only acquaintances will.

We should practice "cut-loss" to unworthy "friends" in our lives too.

KC said...

When the shit hits the fan, 5% is no hedge. Either go bigger or forget it.

caelitus said...

There was an ad that ran in the Sunday Times. It promised 24% p.a. returns. People never do learn. The firm is Credo Investment. My ex-colleague was caught in the Geneva scam.

yeh said...

hi AK

long time ago, my husband's friend brought us to land banking seminar.

well, the reture they promised to give us also quite attractive, i roughly remember ~10%.

but i just prefer to own something which i can see, ended up i didn't buy/invest any.

i suspect land banking also a scam.

AK71 said...


I have friends and I have acquaintances in life. Sometimes, I find my acquaintances better than my friends in some ways. Sometimes.

Well, like with so many things in life, we learn along the way who our true friends and acquaintances are. Time will tell.

Am I confused? Am I confusing you too? I don't know. -.-"

AK71 said...

Hi E H,

When bad things happen, it is better to have even a little bit of insurance than not. Really, I would rather have that 5% than not.

We have to remember that if fiat currencies should one day fail and if there should be a reset, that 5% could be worth a lot more. :)

AK71 said...

Hi caelitus,

It is very unfortunate that human beings have a very short memory.

If we can help to alert the people around us to scams like this, we would be doing good. :)

AK71 said...

Hi yeh,

Your instincts served you well if that land banking company was selling you some "plots" of land that they claimed would turn out to be "profitable". Hint, hint. ;p

Yan said...

A friend of mine was brought to a 'seminar' by a fellow colleague. Instead of gold, this company sells 'oil and gas'. There is a promised return of 12% a year. I believe they are still operating, as their website is still active. I advised my friend against investing with them. The company is known as "Capital Asia Group". Should I have told my friend to keep away from such a venture?

AK71 said...

About 150 people have lodged a police report, after a company they had invested in became uncontactable.

The investors, who comprised both local and Chinese nationals, had invested a total of S$50 million. Individual investments ranged from S$40,000 to S$8 million.

Under the so-called “Sure Win 4 U” scheme set up by a Malaysian company, the money received would go towards funding professional gamblers.

Alleged victims were lured by returns of as much as three times their investment at the end of two years. The scheme promised a monthly payout of between five and nine per cent on investment. The money earned would be in the form of online credits, which could only be converted into cash by the company's team leaders.

Madam Lao, who invested S$200,000 in the scheme, said: "I was thinking we are going to retire, and this seemed like a good platform because memberships numbered over 100,000 from all over the world. And this is the first time we have invested in such things. I did not know this was actually a scam case."


AK71 said...

Hi Yan,

Thanks for telling me about this. I took a look at their website and they do promise 3% payout every quarter but details on how this is achieved is sketchy.

It is easy to make very positive statements and promises, of course. I only see good things stated and nothing bad. This makes me worried.
"It is hassle free as Asia Buyers appoint Conserve Oil Group Inc. as manager and operators to store and resell the purchased crude oil to enjoy the discount. This discount is payable to you through your designated bank account on every 15th day of each fixed identified quarter - January, April, July and October."

Your friend should not fear the hassle to ask them for more information on how the income is being generated, what are the risks involved and also audited numbers if he is really interested.

Unless I am satisfied with their answers and what I see, I will not be touching this.

seefei said...

can we have a law that require all companies or organisations to lodge with the MAS for any "Claimed" promised return that is more than the average return of Singapore Reit? sound hair brain but it alert people that anything above the average is bordering on illegal or impossible. tread with care....

AK71 said...

Hi seefei,

I think there should be a blanket requirement for all companies which offer investment services and products to be registered with MAS and be subjected to scrutiny. This Suisse International is one incident too many. -.-

Cory said...

Even the name gives a false indication is the famous bank. Clearly to misguide people. A little knowledge would have you running away from such scheme.

Singapore Man of Leisure said...


Semantics :)

AK71 said...

Hi Cory,

Indeed so although I think many were not so much blinded by the name of the company but by their own greed. :(

AK71 said...


I would think that it is more "stylistics" than "semantics". I atas or not? ;p

Singapore Man of Leisure said...


Nah! That won't stick on you.

I admire your restraint in using big words when there's an easier bombastic alternative ;)

AK71 said...


Aiyoh, I don't care atas or highfalutin or falungong lah. You admire me, I happy liao. Can die smiling liao. ;p

AK71 said...

Hi Yan,

I found an article which your friend might want to read. I extracted this for you:

Against this backdrop of constantly shifting factors, how is COC guaranteeing an absolute return of 3% per quarter?

"When posed the question by KiniBiz, Quek said COC is able to do this due to the relatively huge margins enjoyed by the oil and gas industry.

According to his own research, the cost of drilling in Canada comes to roughly $25 per barrel, which comes before the royalty payments to the government for oil drilled. “Even after all these costs, (there is a) maximum of $40 to $50 dollars per barrel (in profits).”

“So we are talking about pretty huge margins over here,” said Quek further, adding that in comparison, the small discount to Asian buyers is “not too much to ask for.”

In terms of crude oil price fluctuations and shifting foreign exchange rates, Quek responded that COC would have no problems in making up any difference given the profit margins involved.

“Today’s oil price is 100 dollars per barrel. Look at today’s world, wars in three nations. Is it possible for oil to plunge?” he asked rhetorically. “Almost impossible.”

A deeper concern for those considering this investment scheme is perhaps one name that has been raised in connection to the scheme — J├╝rgen Hanne, who was behind several investment schemes that had since collapsed.


Siew Mun said...

WTI is at US$45 and Brent is at US$50? Margin is getting thinner

AK71 said...

Hi Siew Mun,

If crude oil prices remain depressed, I have a feeling that this might turn ugly. I hope I am wrong for the sake of the many people who have put their money into this product. -.-"

Yan said...

Thanks for doing the research and leading me to the link. I was concerned that I may have unwittingly deprived my friend of passive income derived from the investment. I feel more reassured that my advice was correct. Of course, oil prices were higher then, and I doubt that the company will be able to sustain the payout at today's oil prices.

AK71 said...

Hi Yan,

I am always careful to say that I am not giving any advice. :)

I just feel that it is important for anyone who is looking into "alternative investments" to be more cautious than usual because these are not regulated by the authorities.

There might be very good investments in this world but, in such instances, very rarely would insiders share the secrets with us. I remind myself of this all the time.

AK71 said...

More than 100 unhappy investors gathered outside the Police Cantonment Complex on Monday to make police reports to the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) about a local investment company.

They had invested in a gold buyback scheme with Suisse International but claim that they have not received their promised monthly payouts since September.

More recently, bosses of the company are alleged to have dropped out of contact.

The investors present claimed to represent around 250 people who have lost an estimated total of $35 million.

Another investor, Mr Teo, said he had borrowed money from a bank to invest. Since July 2013, he put in several hundred thousands of dollars and introduced more than 10 friends to the programme, which he said he now feels bad about.

"At first I thought the investment was not bad, there were returns... it looked legitimate, the office in Toa Payoh was so big and I was at the opening of the Johor Bahru office as well," said the retiree who is in his 50s.


garyp said...

Hihi AK, earlier I was playing around w the Invest Buy Gold tab of my OCBC App... buy thru local bank app ok la right?

AK71 said...

Hi garyp,

Oh, I have great faith in our home grown banks. :)

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