By Doug Young

Does your firm use a SEP (Simplified Employee Pension) IRA for retirement options?

Alternatively, are you an entrepreneur who has chosen to adopt a SEP IRA into your organization?

SEP IRAs are potent and efficient retirement resources, but can you use them to spread the risk of your retirement assets, by purchasing physical silver and gold bullion?

Here I will take a closer look at SEP IRAs, and see how they measure up to alternative retirement strategies. Also, I will examine how investments in precious metals work, and how your retirement assets can be protected against currency or stock market collapses.

SEP IRAs in Focus

The IRS (Internal Revenue Service) permits entrepreneurs to use SEP IRA programs in both their staff and their own retirement funds.

A hybrid of conventional IRAs, SEP IRAs enable tax deductible money to be paid into staff accounts or employer accounts, with far greater limits compared to conventional IRAs.

All individual staff members have a separate annuity or an IRA set up under their name. Such accounts are used like standard IRAs and offer the identical investment choices as conventional IRA strategies.

To be eligible for a staff member SEP IRA, a person has to be twenty-one years of age or older. Also, they have to have been employed by the same firm for a minimum of three years, from the previous half decade, and have received a minimum of $550 in wages throughout the tax year.

With SEP IRAs, normal limits for contribution are either 25 percent of a staff member’s income, or $66,000.00 (for 2023) — whichever is smaller. For the self-employed though, there’s a limit for contributions based on a net profit percentage of 25 percent.

After the money is deposited, the assets serve like a conventional IRA, and possess all the identical rules regarding distribution, investment and deduction etc.

One huge benefit of SEP IRA programs (compared to other company sponsored programs) is that the money instantly becomes one-hundred percent vested.

SEP IRA Rules for Rollovers

The IRS allows rollovers or transfers from SEP IRAs to occur tax free, providing the funds are moved to a different certified account.

The sole condition is that each plan (the receiving plan and the SEP) should allow for account rollovers for retirement savings.

If you’ve got a SEP and want to carry out a rollover, it is possible to transfer the whole balance of your account, or just a part of it.


Penalties are enforced if you take cash distributions before reaching retirement age (59½ years).

Furthermore, if you want to perform a rollover, you are advised to do a direct rollover, rather than an indirect one. Indirect rollovers come with withholding demands, and often incur early distribution fees.

How Can Gold Protect Your Retirement?


SEP IRA and Gold – What Kinds of Gold can you Invest in?

When it comes to a SEP IRA, your choice of investments is restricted to your custodian’s discretion. By law though, SEP IRAs can provide the following investment types:

  •  Individual bonds (government and corporate)
  •  Individual stock
  •  Mutual fund shares
  •  Options
  •  CDs (Certificates of Deposit)
  •  ETF (Exchange Traded Funds) shares
  •  Precious metal bars
  •  Property

SEP IRAs offer an intriguing selection of investments in the tax efficient world.

As well as allowing all the identical investments of a conventional IRA (along with the identical custodian dependent limitations), several SEPs even permit investments of bullion, or other types of commodities.

In these situations, SEPs offer one of the few methods to store real silver, gold, palladium or platinum in a savings account.

Obviously SEP IRAs can be used for investments in paper gold, via the purchase of gold mining firm stocks, or via mutual funds (which hold the stocks of mining firms) or ETFs, which includes mining firms. This is how to make gold investments indirectly.

‘Paper Gold’ Versus Physical Gold Investments

‘Paper gold’ stocks are offered by companies that mine, create and search for gold bullion.

There are a huge number of gold stocks available, and the bigger firms are displayed on the main gold indices, such as the GDX (Gold Miners Index) or the HUI (BUGS Index).

Typically, buying physical gold presents less of a risk than investing in gold stocks. This is due to the fact that historically whereas gold stocks have appreciated proportionally as gold spot prices have increased, when gold prices have fallen gold stocks have tended to fall far quicker in value.

Moreover, gold stocks are vulnerable to other risks.

What Are The Alternatives For Including Physical Gold In Your Retirement Plan?

The Most popular alternatives are Gold IRAs. If you are considering transferring or rolling over your SEP IRA to a Gold IRA here are 2 articles that you might find useful:

Gold IRA vs SEP Gold IRA: Which is the Better Investment Option?

How To Compare Gold IRA Companies To Invest In

About the Author: Doug Young
Doug YoungDoug is a highly experienced professional and widely trusted authority in financial investing, commodity trading, and precious metals. With over 20 years of expertise, he helps others make informed decisions by sharing a combination of personal experience, extensive knowledge and meticulously researched information on gold IRAs, precious metals investing and retirement planning. He regularly writes news items on these topics. He has considerable experience of evaluating Gold IRA and Precious Metals Companies, gained over a period spanning more than a decade.

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