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Gold is best investment. Stock market also perform very good in last 4 years. Few blue chip stocks increase by 100% and also pay dividend and even bonus. Mutual funds like Meezan return is around 12% plus rebate in tax.
Property suffers most in last 5 years and still no chance of improvement. Due to artificial hype by few investors and dealers the prices of property start moving. But in my opinion the price of the plots in most of the area is same which is 3-4 years back the increases actually due to rupee devaluation.
If banks start giving a reasonable return on foreign currency accounts than investment in foreign currency is aso a very good option.
Although Gold did perform well in the past 5 years by getting an average of more than 18%, but in the current scenario one would have to gamble to put his eggs in the basket which is already inflated very well.
Also do consider the 10.15 % average rate of inflation in pakistan from 2003 to 2010. (Source : CIA World Facbook). so in the whole picture getting around 12% gains will not be considered as "gains" in a true sense, it will rather be considered as to merely just saving the face of your savings from hot blows of unstoppable inflation in Pakistan.
1. Spontaneous trading of plots/property (esp in places like Islamabad) is lucrative.
2. Spontaneous trading of gold is a bit risky now a days for the last 1 year. very very much fluctuations in rates.
3. PKR account with annual profit rate is a foolish task. u even cannot cover you inflation rate by doing so.
4. Keeping dollars in your pocket or in bank account (because of nominal rate of profit offered on FC) means waiting for the rupee to be devalue. at end getting nothing.
In long run:
1. Investment in the gold is best option. I am watching gold prices for almost 10 years. starts climbing since Jan 2006. Avg growth rate is more than 40% p.a. approx
other priorities should be;
4. TDR (PKR)
(NOTE: it is worth to mention here that this is purely my personal analysis/opinion. others have the right of disagreement.)
Here an idea arise in my mind.
Let's talk/discuss about trading of different commodities among inter/intra city. you know trading is and will be the best ever business.
Gold prices have risen up by 285% since June 2007 to June 2012 in Pakistan market. So one can say in the past 5 years it has been increased by an avg 50%+. So no doubt its a lucrative investment option proven at times.
Can anyone tell what is the best /safest/easiest method to invest in gold esp if you are stationed abroad i.e. mid east ?
Well gold has done very well in the past few years but now it seems a bit risky to invest too much in gold because of the high prices... and experts never ever advise to invest more then 10-20% of your total assets in gold because of the risk of gold prices falling. I bought some gold few months back now if I want to sell it it will be in loss.
The other thing about gold is the security element... if you keep your gold in the bank locker remember it's only insured upto 5 to 10 lac! incase of bank robbery or theft or bank burning down etc. but your forigen currency account is more secure as these factors don't affect it!
That's why I wrote that it is for long term investment. Your concern about the security measurements for gold is true. But you can hire several lockers in several banks/branches in most secured places.