Germans are increasingly buying gold because of fears about economic uncertainty and a third of them are now considering gold as part of their investments, a study from German precious metals group Heraeus Holding GmbH said on Tuesday.

There had been increased gold demand from German investors in recent months because of worry about actions taken by the European Central Bank and U.S. Federal Reserve as the two central banks sought to counter the euro zone crisis and slow U.S. economic growth, the study said.

German private investors now owned 8,000 tonnes of gold, Heraeus said.

The study, undertaken in cooperation with the Steinbeis college in Berlin, said gold bars were currently the most popular form of physical gold investment in Germany as they were regarded as secure against forgery.

Gold coins were regarded as more interesting to collectors than investors, it said.

About half of German private investors kept their physical gold at home, it said.

(Reporting by Michael Hogan; editing by James Jukwey)