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Read the runes – Inflation is showing some staying power

BloombergOpinion/John Authers

Repost from 10-8-202

photgraph of scattered viking runes“Persistent price pressures would be a severe test for the Fed, just as shifting politics raise questions over its future leadership.”

USAGOLD note: Reading the runes, it seems that deep within the data, as presented by Authers, economists are finding good reasons to be concerned about persistent (or cyclical) inflation. Suppose it is not Powell heading up the Fed in 2022. In that case, it is likely to be Lael Brainard, a much more dovish practitioner of the monetary arts and someone much closer in philosophy to the progressive wing of the Democratic Party.

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Posted in Catalogue/OOD, Today's top gold news and opinion |

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Historic Fractional Gold Coins

Historic Fractional Gold Coins are an ideal option for those seeking to combine the negotiable/divisible advantages of small-denomination gold coin ownership with added insulation against the risk of a future government intervention into the gold market.  Often referred to as ‘Historic Bullion’, their vast mintages and consistent availability make these the least expensive fractional gold coins available in the market. They simultaneously offer buyers the ‘most gold for your money’ option in the pre-1933 genre, track the gold price directly, and typically price below their modern equivalents on a per ounce basis  A truly, ‘two birds, one stone’ vehicle for the safe-haven, asset-preservation minded investor.

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Historic U.S. Gold Coins

Historic U.S. coins (most notably U.S. $20 gold pieces) as a genre, uniquely combine safety and insulation against the possibility of future government intervention with the opportunity for double-barrel profit potential during periods of premium expansion.  The value of historic US coins is driven primarily by the underlying price of gold itself – but due to an inherently limited supply, the ‘premium’ component of their value can also expand during times of increased demand thereby elevating investment returns.  Given their current undervalued condition (see historic price graphs and commentary at each invidicual coin page), pre-1933 U.S. coins currently represent one of the most compelling portfolio choices for asset preservation/safety-net oriented gold owners.

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USAGOLD is a market leader in type sets, date runs, complete date sets, regional sets, and mint-mark sets of both U.S. and World gold coinage.  While we list these sets under ‘Collectible Coins’, many of our sets sell within a reasonable range of the spot gold value of the coins, and are typically offered at a discount to the cost of the coins individually.  Items offered here are generally extremely limited in their availability, and represent unique, hard-to-find accumulation opportunities for heirloom-minded investors.


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Last Updated: December 20, 2017


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Commentary: This combination of gold and silver is an ideal starting point for investors interested in investing roughly $1000 to start. It combines coinage from both the modern era and the historical era and is split roughly 80/20, gold to silver. The total number of ounces of gold in the kit is .5221 and the total number of ounces of silver is 8.901. Shipping is waived on all starter kits.

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Historic gold Netherlands 10 guilder type set

photo of Netherland 10- guilder type setFour-Coin Type Sets from the Netherlands

King Willem III, Queen Wilhelmina (Long Hair, Mature, Elder)
.1947 troy ounce per coin – .7788 troy ounce per set

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These four coin sets from the Netherlands are offered in Brilliant Uncirculated condition and comprise all 10 Guilder denominated coinage minted from 1875-1933.  The ‘Long Hair’ Wilhelmina variety is exceptionally rare, minted for just one year (1897) and a total mintage of just 450,000.  The World Gold Coin Catalog suggest a retail value for this coin of $450 by iteself.  King Willem 10 Guilders are also hard to come by, especially in uncirculated condition.  The later Wilhelmina coins are more common, and perenially act as a foundational position for asset-preservation minded gold owners seeking divisible negotiability and insulation against government intervention risk.

Historical Note Queen Wilhelmina:  

Queen Wilhelmina, ‘no-one’s fool’, ascended the throne at a young age after the parliament passed a special law allowing a woman to become monarch. She first displayed an incisive intelligence during a meeting with the powerful Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany prior to World War I. Wilhelm boasted to the young Wilhelmina that “my guards are seven feel tall and yours are only shoulder high to them.” To this she replied politely: “Quite true, Your Majesty, your guards are seven feet tall, but when we open our dikes, the water is ten feet deep!”

Later, Wilhelmina would display this same acumen in the world of business and finance. She amassed a fortune through various business dealings and investments that surpassed a billion dollars, making her the first female billionaire in history. She moved throughout her life in the highest circles of international finance. Known for her spunk, she called Adolf Hitler “the archenemy of mankind” after being forced to leave Holland for England during the German invasion. In 1953, when the country was devastated by floods, she bicycled the countryside at 73 years of age offering hope and inspiration to the Dutch people. Her rule lasted a remarkable fifty-eight years. This series — both the king and queen varieties — remains a popular addition to accumulations in both the United States and Europe.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic World Gold Coins


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Historic gold British sovereign five-coin type set

photo of five coins comprising the British sovereign type setFive-Coin Type Sets from Britain

Queen Victoria Young (AU), Jubilee (AU), Veil (UNC), King Edward (UNC), George (BU)

.2354 troy ounce per coin – 1.177 troy ounce per set

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These Five Coin Type Sets from Britain contain all five full Sovereigns minted during the rules of Queen Victoria, King Edward VII and King George V, representing almost 100 years of British Rule. The earlier Queen varieites are the hardest to come by, and are usually found in lightly circulated condition. The later Queen Victoria (Veil), as well as the two King types, collectively represent the most well-recognized coinage in the world, used as the global monetary standard, store of value, and means for exchange during the height of the British Empire.

Historical Note on Queen Victoria:

Queen Victoria ruled England for nearly 64 years from 1837-1901, making her one of the longest ruling monarchs in history. She presided over the dramatic expansion of British influence and territorial rule such that during her reign, “The sun never set on the British Empire”. By the time she died, Britain had become the largest empire the world had ever known, and presided over roughly 1/4 of the world’s population. She celebrated her Golden Jubilee (50 years of reign) in 1887 – as signified by the “Jubilee” desing Sovereign – and her Diamond Jubliee (60 years of reign) 10 years later.

Historical Note on King Edward and King George:

The Edwardian era, named for Edward VII (right), differed sharply from the rigid and puritanical Victorian age which preceded it. Edward VII was the eldest son of Queen Victoria, and ruled Britain from 1901-1910. Queen Victoria insisted on an incredibly strict regimen for Edward, while never allowing his involvement in political affairs. As a result, Edward led a rebellious, indulgent lifestyle that many felt would compromise his ability to be an effective monarch. To the chagrin of his critics, Edward ruled peacefully and effectively during his reign, saving Britain from a budgetary crisis and strengthening relationships with European powers. Edward’s reign was a brief and happy time of peace and prosperity for Britain before the shadow of World War I descended upon Europe. He died in 1910 of a heart attack.

His second son, George V (left with wife, Queen Mary) succeeded his rule in 1910. George led Britain through World War I and the negative effects brought on by the Depression of 1929-1931. English Historian Robert Lacey describes George: “. . . as his official biographer felt compelled to admit, King George V was distinguished ‘by no exercise of social gifts, by no personal magnetism, by no intellectual powers. He was neither a wit nor a brilliant raconteur, neither well-read nor well-educated, and he made no great contribution to enlightened social converse. He lacked intellectual curiosity and only late in life acquired some measure of artistic taste.’ He was, in other words, exactly like most of his subjects. He discovered a new job for modern kings and queens to do — representation.” George V and his wife, Queen Mary, made the monarchy a symbol of conservative, middle-class virtue. George relinquished his German titles and adopted the name of Windsor for the British royal house.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic World Gold Coins

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US gold Liberty four-coin type set MS 64

photo of four coin Liberty type set in MS 64Four-Coin U.S. Liberty Type Set MS64
$20 Liberty Mint State 64; $10 Liberty MS64;
$5 Liberty MS64; $2.5 Liberty
 MS64;

All graded by PCGS or NGC
Highly Popular Semi-Numismatic Items

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Featuring the four prominent gold coins in circulation in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, our United States four-coin type sets offer the opportunity to purchase an important piece of American history at cyclically low prices.  We offer these sets in the very collectible Mint State 63 and 64 grades – a high state of preservation with pleasing visual appeal.  The $10 Indian and $20 St. Gaudens gold coins were designed by famed sculptor Augustus St. Gaudens under the direction of Theodore Roosevelt, who, in 1907, sought to ‘beautify American coinage’. The $5 and $2.5 Indian coins were designed by Bella Pratt, who stepped in after St. Gaudens death in 1907 to complete the series. Christian Gobrecht designed the earlier Liberty type. All our sets are graded by PCGS and/or NGC – the two most widely-accepted independent grading services and include common-date items from the largest mintages or surviving populations.

Only roughly 20,000 coins of each of the $2.5, $5, and $10 Liberty have achieved grade Mint State 64 when combining both PCGS and NGC graded coins.  As such, a maximum of just roughly 20,000 four coin sets can even be completed in Mint State 64, though far few likely do exist intact, as numerous coins are owned outside the context of a ‘set’.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins
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US gold Liberty four-coin type set MS63

photo of four coins Liberty Type set MS 63Four-Coin U.S. Liberty Type Set MS63
$20 Liberty Mint State 63; $10 Liberty MS63;
$5 Liberty MS63; $2.5 Liberty
 MS63;

All graded by PCGS or NGC
Highly Popular Semi-Numismatic Items

Questions?  Give us a call or send us an email.  Market insight, analysis & guidance from real experts with real experience. 46 years in business.  A+ BBB.  Zero complaints.


Featuring the four prominent gold coins in circulation in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, our United States four-coin type sets offer the opportunity to purchase an important piece of American history at cyclically low prices.  We offer these sets in the very collectible Mint State 63 and 64 grades – a high state of preservation with pleasing visual appeal.  The $10 Indian and $20 St. Gaudens gold coins were designed by famed sculptor Augustus St. Gaudens under the direction of Theodore Roosevelt, who, in 1907, sought to ‘beautify American coinage’. The $5 and $2.5 Indian coins were designed by Bella Pratt, who stepped in after St. Gaudens death in 1907 to complete the series. Christian Gobrecht designed the earlier Liberty type. All our sets are graded by PCGS and/or NGC – the two most widely-accepted independent grading services and include common-date items from the largest mintages or surviving populations.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins

 


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US gold Indian-Saint type set MS 64

photo of Indian-Saint set MS 64Four-Coin U.S. St. Gaudens/Indian Type Set MS64
$20 St. Gaudens Mint State 64; $10 Indian MS64;
$5 Indian MS64; $2.5 Indian
 MS64;

All graded by PCGS or NGC
Highly Popular Semi-Numismatic Items

Featuring the four prominent gold coins in circulation in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, our United States four-coin type sets offer the opportunity to purchase an important piece of American history at cyclically low prices.  We offer these sets in the very collectible Mint State 63 and 64 grades – a high state of preservation with pleasing visual appeal.  The $10 Indian and $20 St. Gaudens gold coins were designed by famed sculptor Augustus St. Gaudens under the direction of Theodore Roosevelt, who, in 1907, sought to ‘beautify American coinage’. The $5 and $2.5 Indian coins were designed by Bella Pratt, who stepped in after St. Gaudens death in 1907 to complete the series. Christian Gobrecht designed the earlier Liberty type. All our sets are graded by PCGS and/or NGC – the two most widely-accepted independent grading services and include common-date items from the largest mintages or surviving populations.

Only roughly 15,000 coins of the $5 Indians have achieved grade Mint State 64 when combining both PCGS and NGC graded coins.  As such, a maximum of just roughly 15,000 four coin sets can even be completed in Mint State 64, though far few likely do exist intact, as numerous coins are owned outside the context of a ‘set’.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins

 


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US gold 4-coin type set MS 63

photo of Indian-Saint type set MS 63Four-Coin U.S. St. Gaudens/Indian Type Set MS63
$20 St. Gaudens Mint State 63; $10 Indian MS63;
$5 Indian MS63; $2.5 Indian
 MS63;

All graded by PCGS or NGC
Highly Popular Semi-Numismatic Items

Featuring the four prominent gold coins in circulation in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, our United States four-coin type sets offer the opportunity to purchase an important piece of American history at cyclically low prices.  We offer these sets in the very collectible Mint State 63 and 64 grades – a high state of preservation with pleasing visual appeal.  The $10 Indian and $20 St. Gaudens gold coins were designed by famed sculptor Augustus St. Gaudens under the direction of Theodore Roosevelt, who, in 1907, sought to ‘beautify American coinage’. The $5 and $2.5 Indian coins were designed by Bella Pratt, who stepped in after St. Gaudens death in 1907 to complete the series. Christian Gobrecht designed the earlier Liberty type. All our sets are graded by PCGS and/or NGC – the two most widely-accepted independent grading services and include common-date items from the largest mintages or surviving populations.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins
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US gold $10 Indian MS 64

photo of $10 Indian MS 64United States $10 Indian MS64
Graded by PCGS/NGC
Minted 1907 – 1933
Actual Gold Content: .48375 troy ounce

Just 8 years ago, in the wake of the financial crisis, MS64 $10 Indians topped $3000 per coin, making their current price roughly 1/3 of their peak, and last matched in January 2003, when spot gold was only $350! (See graph below)

For our clients who have positions in graded $20 St. Gaudens and $20 Liberties, this is an unprecedented opportunity to diversify and expand your holdings.  Just 40,000 $10 Indians have achieved grade Mint State 64 when combining the populations of both PCGS and NGC.  For the sake of comparison, roughly 225,000 Mint State 65 $20 St. Gaudens and 140,000 Mint State 64 Liberties, making these Indians 5X and 3.5X as rare respectively, but yet, with this offer, within a reasonable proximity in terms of price per ounce.

Line chart showing price history of $10 Indian MS 64

Chart courtesy of PCGS.

Historical Note:

The U.S. $10 Indian Gold Coins were minted from 1907 until 1933 and designed by the famous sculptor, Augustus Saint-Gaudens. The $10 “Indian” was surprisingly controversial in its time, though later became accepted and praised as perhaps the most exquisite coin design in US history. When the coin was introduced in 1907, many Americans were taken aback by the obverse of the coin, featuring Lady Liberty adorned in a full Indian war bonnet, and even further disgruntled by Theodore Roosevelt’s decision to exclude the motto “In God We Trust.” Eventually, the public came to appreciate the “Indian” design, and in response to public outcry, the motto was added to the coins in 1908. The outer rim of the coin contained 42 stars, one representing each state in the union, until 1912 when the number was increased to 44 to recognize the addition of Arizona and New Mexico to the Union. A perching eagle is pictured on the reverse.

$10 Indians are scarcer and typically more expensive compared to their $10 Liberty design counterparts.  When they can be obtained for similar prices, investors should opt for the $10 Indians.

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US gold $20 St Gaudens MS 65

photos of $20 St Gaudens MS 65United States $20 St. Gaudens
Grade: Mint State 65
Minted:  1907-1932
Actual Gold Content:  .9675 troy ounce

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MS65 $20 St. Gaudens are an attractive gold investment for those seeking exposure to both the gold price itself, as well as additional upside potential through the possibility of premium expansion.  Price performance for the MS65 $20 St. Gaudens is most closely mirrored by the MS64 $20 Liberty. According to PCGS (Professional Coin Grading Company), MS65 $20 St. Gaudens have a known population of slightly less than 150,000 coins. By comparison, just over 60,000 $20 Liberty gold coins (Type III) exist in MS64.

The following graph displays a twenty year price performance history for the MS65 $20 St. Gaudens gold coins, along with the gold price.


Line chart showing price history of $20 St Gaudens MS 65

MS65 $20 Saint Gaudens, like their counterparts, are near cycle lows in terms of their premiums to underlying gold value. Their highest rarity levels were achieved in the 1980’s and shouldn’t be necessarily expected to repeat. The graph below shows the twenty-year premium performance for the MS65 $20 St. Gaudens relative to its underlying gold content value.  The premium as listed on the y (vertical)-axis should be read as a multiplier of the gold price.  In other words, a coin premium of 2 is equal to double the gold price, and a coin premium of 4 is equal to 4 times the gold price.  In recent years, premiums on the MS65 $20 St. Gaudens have begun to form what may be a bottoming pattern, as seen below.  Cycle lows have shown premiums as low as 1.40 (40%) over gold, while recent highs in 2009 saw premiums at 2.8x gold.

Line chart sowing premium history of $20 St Gaudens MS 65

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US gold $20 St Gaudens MS 64

photo of $20 St. Gaudens MS 64United States $20 St. Gaudens
Grade: Mint State 64
Minted:  1907-1932
Actual Gold Content:  .9675 troy ounce
 

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MS64 $20 St. Gaudens are an ideal gold investment for those seeking exposure to both the gold price itself, as well as additional upside potential through the possibility of premium expansion.  Given that the Saint Gaudens gold cons were minted after Liberties, and are therefore newer and experienced less use and circulation, specimens from each conditional grade are a fair bit more common, and therefore more affordable, than a Liberty counterpart.  MS 64 St. Gaudens are a common option for investors looking to step up slightly from raw uncirculated coinage but not pay significant added premiums.  According to PCGS (Professional Coin Grading Company), slightly less than 300,000 $20 Saint Gaudens gold coins exist in MS64, about the same number as MS63 $20 St. Gaudens.

The following graph displays a twenty year price performance history for the MS64 $20 St. Gaudens, along with the gold price.

Line chart showing price history $20 St Gaudens MS 64

With such a similar populations, 63 and 64 grade Saint Gaudens are usually paired closely in price. MS63 $20 Saint Gaudens, like their counterparts, are near cycle lows in terms of their premiums to underlying gold value.  Their highest rarity levels were achieved in the 1980’s and shouldn’t be necessarily expected to repeat.  The graph below shows the twenty-year premium performance for the MS64 $20 St. Gaudens relative to its underlying gold content value.  The premium as listed on the y (vertical)-axis should be read as a multiplier of the gold price.  In other words, a coin premium of 2 is equal to double the gold price, and a coin premium of 4 is equal to 4 times the gold price.  Cycle lows have shown premiums on the MS64 $20 St. Gaudens as low as 1.19 (19%) over gold, although just recently (April 2019) premiums dipped to just 15% over gold (the lowest premium ever recorded), while recent highs in 2009 saw premiums at 2.2x gold.

Line chart showing $20 St Gaudens MS premium history

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins
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US gold $20 St. Gaudens MS 63

photo of $20 St Gaudens MS 63

United States $20 St. Gaudens
Grade:  Mint State 63
Minted:  1907-1932
Actual Gold Content:  .9675 troy ounce
 

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MS63 $20 St. Gaudens are an ideal gold investment for those seeking exposure to both the gold price itself, as well as additional upside potential through the possibility of premium expansion.  Given that the Saint Gaudens gold cons were minted after Liberties, and are therefore newer and experienced less use and circulation, specimens from each conditional grade are a fair bit more common, and therefore more affordable, than a Liberty counterpart.  MS 63 St. Gaudens are a common option for investors looking to step up slightly from raw uncirculated coinage but not pay significant added premiums.  According to PCGS (Professional Coin Grading Company), slightly less than 300,000 $20 Saint Gaudens gold coins exist in MS63.

The following graph displays a twenty year price performance history for the MS63 $20 St. Gaudens gold coins, along with the gold price.

Line chart of price history for $20 St Gaudens MS 63

MS63 $20 Saint Gaudens, like their counterparts, are near cycle lows in terms of their premiums to underlying gold value.  Their highest rarity levels were achieved in the 1980’s and shouldn’t be necessarily expected to repeat.  The graph below shows the twenty-year premium performance for the MS63 $20 St. Gaudens relative to its underlying gold content value.  The premium as listed on the y (vertical)-axis should be read as a multiplier of the gold price.  In other words, a coin premium of 2 is equal to double the gold price, and a coin premium of 4 is equal to 4 times the gold price.  Cycle lows have shown premiums on the MS63 $20 St. Gaudens as low as 1.15 (15%) over gold, while recent highs in 2009 saw premiums at 2x gold.  In recent months, premiums on the MS63 $20 St. Gaudens have begun to form what may be a bottoming pattern, as seen below.

Line chart showing premium history of $20 St Gaudens MS 63

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins

 

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US gold $20 Liberty MS 64

photo of $20 liberty MS 64

United States $20 Liberty
Grade: Mint State 64
Minted:  1850-1907
Actual Gold Content:  .9675 troy ounc

Questions?  Give us a call or send us an email.  Market insight, analysis & guidance from real experts with real experience. 46 years in business.  A+ BBB.  Zero complaints.


MS64 $20 Liberty gold coins are an ideal gold investment for those seeking exposure to both the gold price itself, as well as additional upside potential through the possibility of premium expansion.  Given that the Liberty gold cons were minted prior to St. Gaudens, and are therefore older and experienced broader use and circulation, specimens from each conditional grade are a fair bit scarcer than a St. Gaudens counterpart.  To the point, price performance in the MS64 $20 Liberty is most closely mirrored by the MS65 $20 St. Gaudens, though it is traditionally valued slightly higher due to a lower population.  According to PCGS (Professional Coin Grading Company), about 60,000 $20 Liberty gold coins exist in Mint State 64.  By comparison, MS65 $20 St. Gaudens have a known population of slightly less than 160,000 coins.

The following graph displays a twenty year price performance history for the MS64 $20 Liberty gold coins, along with the gold price.

Line chart price of $20 Liberty MS 64

MS64 $20 Liberties, like their counterparts, are near cycle lows in terms of their premiums to underlying gold value.  Their highest rarity levels were achieved in the 1980’s and shouldn’t be necessarily expected to repeat.  The graph below shows the twenty-year premium performance for the MS64 $20 Liberty relative to its underlying gold content value  The premium as listed on the y (vertical)-axis should be read as a multiplier of the gold price.  In other words, a coin premium of 2 is equal to double the gold price, and a coin premium of 4 is equal to 4 times the gold price.  Cycle lows have shown premiums as low as 1.30 (30%) over gold, while recent highs in 2009 saw premiums at nearly 3.5x gold.

Line chart premium history $20 Liberty MS 64

 

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US gold $20 Liberty MS 63

photo of $20 liberty gold coin MS63United States $20 Liberty
Grade:  Mint State 63
Minted:  1850-1907
Actual Gold Content:  .9675 troy ounce

Questions?  Give us a call or send us an email.  Market insight, analysis & guidance from real experts with real experience. 46 years in business.  A+ BBB.  Zero complaints.


MS63 $20 Liberty Gold Coins are an ideal gold investment for those seeking exposure to both the gold price itself, as well as additional upside potential through the possibility of premium expansion.  Given that the Liberty gold cons were minted prior to St. Gaudens, and are therefore older and experienced broader use and circulation, specimens from each conditional grade are a fair bit scarcer than a St. Gaudens counterpart.  To the point, price performance in the MS 63 Liberty is most closely mirrored by the MS 64 St. Gaudens, though it is traditionally valued slightly higher due to a lower population.  According to PCGS (Professional Coin Grading Company), about 130,000 $20 Liberty gold coins exist in MS63.  By comparison, MS64 $20 St. Gaudens have a known population of 245,136 coins. The following graph displays a twenty year price performance history for the MS63 $20 Liberty gold coins, along with the gold price.

Line chart showing price history of $20 Liberty MS 63

MS63 $20 Liberties, like their counterparts, are near cycle lows in terms of their premiums to underlying gold value.  Their highest rarity levels were achieved in the 1980’s and shouldn’t be necessarily expected to repeat.  The graph below shows the twenty-year premium performance for the MS63 $20 Liberty relative to its underlying gold content value.  The premium as listed on the y (vertical)-axis should be read as a multiplier of the gold price.  In other words, a coin premium of 2 is equal to double the gold price, and a coin premium of 4 is equal to 4 times the gold price.  Cycle lows have shown premiums as low as 1.25 (25%) over gold, while recent highs in 2009 saw premiums at 2.75x gold.

Line chart of premium history of $20 liberty MS 63

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US gold five-piece index set – St. Gaudens

photo of 5 piece set st.gaudens$20 Gold Piece 5-Piece Index Set
Includes:  $20 Liberty Mint State 63 & 64;
$20 St. Gaudens Mint State 63, 64 & 65
(One each)
All graded by PCGS or NGC
Semi-numismatic items

Questions?  Give us a call or send us an email.  Market insight, analysis & guidance from real experts with real experience. 46 years in business.  A+ BBB.  Zero complaints.


This research report details the price and premium history of­ the Mint State (MS)63 and MS64 United States $20 Liberty and the MS63, MS64, and MS65 $20 St. Gaudens gold coins. Pictured above is a brief explanation of the Mint State grading scale for semi-numismatic gold coins. As you move to the right across the scale, the condition of the coins improves and their scarcity increases (total availability decreases). The value of that scarcity is represented through the premium, or value of the coin above and beyond the value of its underlying gold content. The premium a coin carries is directly correlated to its rarity, and the more value a coin carries in its rarity, the more volatile its price changes will be. As such, moving right along the scale naturally increases risk/reward opportunities.

Below you will find both price history and premium history graphs for the five coin index set. The two charts can be used in conjunction to evaluate the current market conditions for these gold coins. Buying when the premium cycles are at or near all time lows has proven to be an ideal investment strategy.

Downside risk in these coins is divided into two categories: Premium risk, and the risk associated with the price of gold. By purchasing at a level where the premium is at or near an all time low, exposure to loss of value through declining premiums is mitigated. In other words, by buying ‘right’ investors can enjoy all the increased upside potential inherent in these coins without adding substantially more risk to their position than that of gold itself. Conversely, if one buys when premiums are too high, he stands to see compounded losses if both gold and premiums should decline together, or risks abbreviated gains should gold move higher, but premiums move lower.

Line chart of premium history 5 piece $20 gold piece set

Charted here is the USAGOLD Index of Graded $20 Gold Pieces – Premium (above) & Price (below). The Index of Graded $20 Gold Pieces contains one each Mint State (MS) 63 and MS 64 United States $20 Liberty and one each MS63, MS64, and MS65 $20 St. Gaudens gold coins and combines them into a five-coin market index. This index removes the volatility possible when tracking individual coins to provide a more accurate general market snapshot for graded $20 gold pieces. Take some time to study these charts closely. The premium as listed on the y (vertical)-axis should be read as a multiplier of the gold price.  In other words, a coin premium of 2 is equal to double the gold price, and a coin premium of 3 is equal to 3 times the gold price.

Line chart of price history 5 piece $20 gold index set

In short, the graded $20 gold piece market works well for those looking to increase the risk/reward factor in their gold holdings. If approached carefully and prudently, investors can enjoy great success in this market. Due simply to the fact that these coins trend with the gold price rather than track it directly (as seen in the price graph above), our advice is not to utilize these coins as the sole position in one’s gold holdings, but instead as a component in a balanced portfolio. We recommend a three to five year minimum holding period for these items.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins
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US gold $5 Liberty

photo of US $5 Liberty gold coinUnited States $5 Liberty
Grade:  Almost Uncirculated
Minted:  1839-1908
Actual Gold Content:  .241875 troy ounce


  • Fractional/Divisible/Negotiable historic American coinage
  • Less per coins than the modern equivalent (1/4 oz. American Eagle)
  • Added liquidity advantages and premium potential associated with pre-1933 gold coin ownership
  • All coins in vistually attractive, strong AU/AU+ condition
  • Nice mix of dates ranging from 1880-1907

Commentary: It’s worth noting, that as a general rule, the smaller you go in historic US coinage, the rarer and more expensive it typically becomes.  Even though a great many were stuck, given the prevalence of smaller coinage in circulation at the time of Roosevelt’s recall in 1933, large swaths were easily confiscated and relegated to the melting pot.  As such, it has typically been the case over the years that smaller US coinage carries significant premiums to both their larger $20 gold piece contemporaries and even moreso to modern equivalents, especially during periods of significant demand.  To the point, thoughout 2009, during the height of the financial crisis, $5 Liberties in AU condition carried an average premium of 50% over spot gold (which would equate to a price today of roughly $580/coin).

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US gold $10 liberty

photo of $10 liberty gold coinUnited States $10 Liberty
Grade:  Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted 1866 – 1907
Actual Gold Content: .48375 troy ounce

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Referred to as the Liberty Eagle, the US $10 Liberty Gold Coin depicts the crowned image of Lady Liberty on the obverse, surrounded by 13 stars representing the original 13 colonies. On the reverse is the traditional bald eagle image, with a shield on its breast, clasping three arrows in its left talon (sinister) and an olive branch in its right (dexter), symbolizing the power of Congress to bring both war and peace, respectively. The eagle’s head is turned to the right, signaling its preference for peace. On an interesting side note, the seal for the President of the United States was virtually the same, except the eagle faced the talon holding the arrows. In 1945, Harry S Truman changed it so that the seals were the same. Christian Gobrecht, most famous for the “seated liberty” design seen on dimes, quarters, and half dollars during this era, designed the Liberty series presented here.

$10 Liberties survived at lower rates than the larger $20 varieties following the gold recall of 1933 and are a good deal scarcer as a result.  When two $10’s can be obtained for close to the same price of a $20, investors would be wise to accumulate.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Historic U.S. Gold Coins
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US gold $10 Indian

photo of $10 Indian gold coinUnited States $10 Indian
Grade:  Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted 1907 – 1933
Actual Gold Content: .48375 troy ounce
 

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The U.S. $10 Indian Gold Coins were minted from 1907 until 1933 and designed by the famous sculptor, Augustus Saint-Gaudens. The $10 “Indian” was surprisingly controversial in its time, though later became accepted and praised as perhaps the most exquisite coin design in US history. When the coin was introduced in 1907, many Americans were taken aback by the obverse of the coin, featuring Lady Liberty adorned in a full Indian war bonnet, and even further disgruntled by Theodore Roosevelt’s decision to exclude the motto “In God We Trust.” Eventually, the public came to appreciate the “Indian” design, and in response to public outcry, the motto was added to the coins in 1908. The outer rim of the coin contained 42 stars, one representing each state in the union, until 1912 when the number was increased to 44 to recognize the addition of Arizona and New Mexico to the Union. A perching eagle is pictured on the reverse.

$10 Indians are scarcer and typically more expensive compared to their $10 Liberty design counterparts.  When they can be obtained for similar prices, investors should opt for the $10 Indians.

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US gold $20 St Gaudens

photo of $20 st. gaudens gold coinUnited States $20 St. Gaudens
Grade: Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted: 1907 – 1932
Actual Gold Content: .9675 troy ounce

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One could argue that US. $20 St. Gaudens Gold Coins are one of the best portfolio choices for asset preservation/safety-net oriented owners.  Owners seeking portfolio protection will appreciate the fact the these coins, while trending directly with the spot price of gold over time, also participate in the periods of premium expansion seen during ‘flight to safety episodes’ – the most recent of which occurred during 2008/09 financial crisis (see graphs below).  Such ‘double-barrel’ profit potential is only accentuated by the $20 St. Gaudens’ historic (pre-1933) designation and the associated insulation against the possibility of future government intervention.

Explaining further, $20 gold pieces are a unique combination of one of the safest and most liquid forms of gold ownership, but also potentially one of the most lucrative – specifically in situations that safe-haven investors describe as the scenarios in which they are most likely to rely on their gold positions.  For example, individuals who purchased BU $20 St. Gaudens in May of 2008 would have enjoyed a doubling of their investment by December 2009, during which the gold price itself had only appreciated $250/oz.

Ironically, the current low in $20 gold piece premiums, measured against an arguably undervalued gold price, in the midst of a destabilized macroeconomic backdrop, are all reminiscent of early 2008 – an environment that proved to be literally the single best ‘buying opportunity’ in $20 gold pieces in the last decade.

Line chart showing $20 Liberty premium history

Line chart of $20 St. Gaudens premium history

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US gold $20 Liberty

photo of US $20 Liberty gold coinUnited States $20 Liberty
Grade:  Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted:  1850-1907
Actual Gold Content:  .9675 troy ounce

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One could argue that US. $20 Liberty Gold Coins are one of the best portfolio choices for asset preservation/safety-net oriented owners.  Owners seeking portfolio protection will appreciate the fact the these coins, while trending directly with the spot price of gold over time, also participate in the periods of premium expansion seen during ‘flight to safety episodes’ – the most recent of which occurred during 2008/09 financial crisis (see graphs below).  Such ‘double-barrel’ profit potential is only accentuated by the $20 Liberty’s historic (pre-1933) designation and the associated insulation against the possibility of future government intervention.

Explaining further, $20 gold pieces are a unique combination of one of the safest and most liquid forms of gold ownership, but also potentially one of the most lucrative – specifically in situations that safe-haven investors describe as the scenarios in which they are most likely to rely on their gold positions.  For example, individuals who purchased BU $20 Liberties in May of 2008 would have enjoyed a doubling of their investment by December 2009, during which the gold price itself had only appreciated $250/oz.

Ironically, the current low in $20 gold piece premiums, measured against an arguably undervalued gold price, in the midst of a destabilized macroeconomic backdrop, are all reminiscent of early 2008 – an environment that proved to be literally the single best ‘buying opportunity’ in $20 gold pieces in the last decade.

Line chart of $20 liberty price histgory

line chart of $20 gold coin premium history 2007 to present

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Historic gold German 20 marks, Wilhelm II

photo of German 20 mark gold coin, Wilhelm II

German 20 Marks 
(Wihelm II)
Grade: Uncirculated
Minted 1888 – 1913
Actual Gold Content: .2304 troy ounce

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German 20 Mark gold coins are some of the most popular with investors. As the last gold coin minted prior to the disastrous inflation that befell Germany in the 1920s, they proved to be life-savers for those who had the foresight to put some away before economic disaster struck. At the height of the 1920’s Nightmare German Inflation, a family’s life savings could not purchase a cup of coffee. A purse of Wilhelm 20 Mark gold coins on the other hand stubbornly held its value, a lesson that has not been lost on the modern saver, particularly those of German descent. Even today, it is said the nightmare inflationary experience of the 1920s affects central bank and federal government economic policy.

Wilhelm II ascended the throne of Germany in June of 1888. Fairly or not, he is generally recorded in history as one of its dark players — highly intelligent, but also tactless, vain, ambitious and adventurous. Historians believe his policies in the early 20th century, particularly toward Britain and France, drove Europe to the brink of war. His personal blunders also strained Germany’s diplomatic relations with other countries.

The most well known instance of this may be the “Daily Telegraph Affair” of 1908. When Wilhelm was offered an interview with the newspaper, he saw it as an opportunity to promote his views and ideas on Anglo-German friendship. Instead, due to his emotional volatility and subsequent outbursts during the course of the interview, Wilhelm ended up further alienating not only the British people, but also the French, Russians, and Japanese all in one fell swoop. He effectively implied that the Germans cared nothing for the British; that the French and Russians had attempted to instigate Germany to intervene in the Second Boer War (a war between the British and republics within South Africa, resulting in their addition to the British Empire); and that the German naval buildup during that time period was targeted against the Japanese, not Britain.

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Historic gold Netherlands 10 guilder, queen

photo of netherland 10 gulder gold coin

Netherlands 10 Guilder
(Queen Wilhelmina)
Grade range: Uncirculated/Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted 1892 – 1933
Actual Gold Content: .1947 troy ounce

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table of Netherland 10 guilder mintagesThe Netherlands 10 Guilder Gold Coins are one of the most popular and highly sought-after pre-1933 European gold coins.  At roughly one fifith of an ounce, they trade for comparable premiums to modern bullion coins of the same size, are highly recognized and liquid in international markets, and move in direct concert with the gold price.  The Queen varieties offered here feature Queen Wilhelmina on the obverse of the coins, and are informally referred to as ‘Dutch Queens’.  Total mintages on Dutch Queens (see table to right) are modest, contributing to their affordability, but still notably less than the most common European issues of the era (Sovereigns for example averaged mintages over 30 million per year, versus the roughly 22 million Guilders struck total during just 9 years of production).

Holland is most famous in financial history for its Tulipmania in 1637 — the prototype financial bubble against which all other bubbles will forever be measured. The price of one special, rare type of tulip bulb called Semper Augustus was 1000 guilders in 1623, 1200 guilders in 1624, 2000 guilders in 1625, and 5500 guilders in 1637. Shortly thereafter, the bottom fell out on the market and prices plummeted to 1/200 of their peak price.

Though tulip bulbs have spent the last 366 years in happy financial dormancy, the more contemporary mania involving stocks and irredeemable paper money continue to crop around the globe with disturbing regularity. A Dutch newspaper reported in 2002 that there now exists a tulip appropriately named Dow Jones, and advised that stock market investors might consider cashing in their holdings and investing the proceeds in (you guessed it) . . . tulip bulbs. It seems they are once again on the upswing. History teaches us that gold coins, like the Dutch 10 Guilder, protect one’s portfolio against such mania.

Queen Wilhelmina, no-one’s fool, ascended the throne at a young age after the parliament passed a special law allowing a woman to become monarch. She first displayed an incisive intelligence during a meeting with the powerful Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany prior to World War I. Wilhelm boasted to the young Wilhelmina that “my guards are seven feel tall and yours are only shoulder high to them.” To this she replied politely: “Quite true, Your Majesty, your guards are seven feet tall, but when we open our dikes, the water is ten feet deep!”

Later, Wilhelmina would display this same acumen in the world of business and finance. She amassed a fortune through various business dealings and investments that surpassed a billion dollars, making her the first female billionaire in history. She moved throughout her life in the highest circles of international finance. Known for her spunk, she called Adolf Hitler “the archenemy of mankind” after being forced to leave Holland for England during the German invasion. In 1953, when the country was devastated by floods, she bicycled the countryside at 73 years of age offering hope and inspiration to the Dutch people. Her rule lasted a remarkable fifty-eight years. This series — both the king and queen varieties — remains a popular addition to accumulations in both the United States and Europe.

 

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Historic gold Swiss 20 franc Helvetia

photo of swiss 20 franc helvetia

Swiss 20 Franc
(Helvetia or Vreneli)
Grade range: Uncirculated/Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted 1897 – 1935
Actual Gold Content: .1867 troy ounce

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The Swiss 20 Franc ‘Helvetia’ is one of the most popular and highly sought-after pre-1933 European gold coins.  At roughly one fifith of an ounce, it trades for comparable premiums to modern bullion coins of the same size, is highly recognized and liquid in international markets, and moves in direct concert with the gold price.

table of Swiss 20 franc mintagesThe Swiss 20 Franc was minted more or less continuously from 1897-1930, with a total mintage of just under twenty million pieces (see accompanying mintage chart).  It was reintroduced in 1935, and the three year post-1933 mintages dwarf that of the rest of the historical (pre-1933) era.

The Swiss 20 Franc Helvetia is referred to informally as the “Vreneli” derived from “Verena” which is Switzerland’s equivalent to the United States Lady Liberty. Modeled by Francoise Engli, this female visage appears on the obverse of the gold coin with the word “Helvetia” written above her head. When the Roman Empire extended northward into Gaul during the second century B.C., the Helvetii were the dominant tribe in the area, and thus Switzerland became known to the Romans as Helvetia. On the reverse is a picture of the Swiss Cross surrounded by a shield, lying on an oak branch.

Owing to its central geographic location among the great powers of Europe, Switzerland has been a commercial and banking center for centuries. It is famous for its role in the gold market where “the gnomes of Zurich” are said to hold much sway. The “gnomes” made their first splash in the gold market when they convinced South Africa that Swiss bankers would be a better market for its gold than the London variety. Russian gold business quickly followed the South African lead. Noted gold authority Timothy Green once said that, “Gold is as much a part of Switzerland as the Alps and skiing.”

Many individuals in Europe and elsewhere who do not trust their own governments and financial systems trust the Swiss to handle their money. As a result, much of the world’s privately held gold is stored secretly in Swiss vaults. For centuries, Swiss bankers and money men have recommended gold coins and bullion as standard portfolio inclusion.

Investor Note: Some firms offer the far more common 1935, 1947, and 1949 mintages at a lower comparative price to the earlier coinage. If your interest is to acquire items dated before 1933, be certain that you are not inadvertently buying a post-1933 item.


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Historic gold British sovereign king

photo of British sovereign king gold coins

British Sovereign Kings
(King Edward VII, George V)
Grade range:  Uncirculated/Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted 1902 – 1925
Actual Gold Content: .2354 troy ounces

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British Sovereign gold coins minted during the reigns of Edward VII (left image) and George V (right image) are probably the most widely owned and recognized gold coins in the world — so much so that the U.S. Army included them as part of its special forces survival pack for a number of years. Over 600 million of the St. George design Sovereigns were minted from 1816 to 1932, and other types come in a high state of preservation. Still today, an original bag of one thousand occasionally shows up in the marketplace.

The Edwardian era, named for Edward VII (left), differed sharply from the rigid and puritanical Victorian age which preceded it. Edward VII was the eldest son of Queen Victoria, and ruled Britain from 1901-1910. Queen Victoria insisted on an incredibly strict regimen for Edward, while never allowing his involvement in political affairs. As a result, Edward led a rebellious, indulgent lifestyle that many felt would compromise his ability to be an effective monarch. To the chagrin of his critics, Edward ruled peacefully and effectively during his reign, saving Britain from a budgetary crisis and strengthening relationships with European powers. Edward’s reign was a brief and happy time of peace and prosperity for Britain before the shadow of World War I descended upon Europe. He died in 1910 of a heart attack.

His second son, George V (right with wife, Queen Mary) succeeded his rule in 1910. George led Britain through World War I and the negative effects brought on by the Depression of 1929-1931. English Historian Robert Lacey describes George: “. . . as his official biographer felt compelled to admit, King George V was distinguished ‘by no exercise of social gifts, by no personal magnetism, by no intellectual powers. He was neither a wit nor a brilliant raconteur, neither well-read nor well-educated, and he made no great contribution to enlightened social converse. He lacked intellectual curiosity and only late in life acquired some measure of artistic taste.’ He was, in other words, exactly like most of his subjects. He discovered a new job for modern kings and queens to do — representation.” George V and his wife, Queen Mary, made the monarchy a symbol of conservative, middle-class virtue. George relinquished his German titles and adopted the name of Windsor for the British royal house.

The first British Sovereign Gold Coin was minted under Tudor King Henry VII in 1489 (not shown). It gets its name from that first mintage which depicts the monarch seated majestically on the throne facing outward. The current design type with St. George slaying a dragon on the reverse and the monarch on the front was introduced nearly 200 years ago in 1816 under George III.

The Sovereign was minted almost continuously from that date until 1932, when Britain went off the gold standard. Minting was resumed in 1957, as a bullion coin, with Queen Elizabeth on the obverse. As such, it holds the distinction of being the only pre-1933 coin to carry over to the modern era.

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Historic gold Victoria young head British sovereign

photo of young head british sovereign - Queen Victoria

British Sovereign Queen Victoria
(Young Head Variety)
Grade range:  Extra Fine/Almost Uncirculated+
Minted 1871-1885
Actual Gold Content: .2354 troy ounces

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The Queen Victoria sovereign gold coins invoke a special nostalgia for a time when the British Navy ruled the seas, and the sun never set on the Empire. London flourished as the trading and financial capital of the world; Britain became the center of rapid technological innovation; and, India glittered as the Crown Jewel of the Empire. The gold Sovereign came to symbolize British financial solidity and to this day enjoys a strong international market, wide-spread recognition and strong liquidity.

artist rendering of young Queen Victoria of EnglandThe mints were pressed to keep pace with Queen Victoria’s 64 year reign. Several different portraits were utilized beginning with the Young Head portrait (1838-1887), followed by the Jubilee Head design meant to commemorate the 50th year of Queen Victoria’s rule (1887-1893) and finally the Veil Head design (1893-1901) which features the mature Victoria. All three designs display St. George slaying the dragon on the reverse. These Queen Victoria coins have lower mintages and are considerably scarcer than the King Sovereign issues of Edward VII and George V which followed.

The “Young Head” is offered for sale in quantity very infrequently, and holds rank as the oldest and rarest of the Sovereigns that can still be obtained at reasonable premiums?. NCG places a per coin suggested retail anywhere from $450-$600 for coins in similar condition to those offered here.

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Historic gold Belgian 20 franc

photo of Belgian 20 franc gold coinBelgian 20 Franc
(Leopold II)
Grade: Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted 1867 – 1882
Actual Gold Content: .1867 troy ounce

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If one takes the time to contrast the computerized replication of modern currencies at little or no cost with the old world elegance, solidity and beauty of these Belgian 20 Franc gold coins, the argument for gold ownership makes itself. The “Leopold” invokes a simpler time when the long-term purchasing power of the national money was not an issue and the great nations of the world forthrightly made their money from gold. The saver knew that 20 francs deposited would translate to the same 20 francs in value when withdrawn.

The Belgian 20 Franc gold coins were minted to the Latin Monetary Union standard of .1867 ounces per coin, to facilitate cross border trade with the 20 Franc issues of other countries at that time (France, Switzerland, Italy, etc.).  The obverse shows Leopold II facing right. On the reverse is the Belgian coat of arms, and the inscription, “L’ Union Fait La Force” or “The Union Makes Strength”.  Belgian 20 Francs are slightly harder to come by than the more common French issues of the era, but still trade at very favorable premiums given their age and state of preservation.

LeapoLeopold II, whose portrait this coin bears, ruled Belgium from 1869 until his death in 1909. Leopold believed that establishing overseas colonies was the key to a country’s success, and he worked tirelessly to acquire colonial territory on the behalf of Belgium. Receiving little support from the Belgian government or the Belgian people, Leopold formed a private holding company to pursue his colonial interests. In 1879, Leopold hired the famous explorer Henry Morton Stanley to establish a colony in the Congo region of Africa. At the Berlin Conference in 1885, representatives from the United States and European countries recognized Leopold as sovereign of the Congo Free State, an area roughly 75 times the size of Belgium. History does not look kindly on Leopold’s actions from this point forward, as the King exploited horribly both the people and the land in the Congo region. Though he generated substantial personal wealth through the procurement of rubber and ivory, the Belgian parliament ultimately forced him to cede the land to his country in 1908.


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Historic gold Argentina 5 peso

photo of Argentino 5 peso gold coin

Argentina 5 peso
(Argentino)
Grade: Uncirculated
Minted 1881 – 1896
Actual Gold Content: .2334 troy ounce

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Around the early 1900’s, the phrase “rich as an Argentine” was used popularly to describe an individual of substantial wealth. In 1914, only Great Britain was more urbanized, and by 1929 only Great Britain had more cars per capita. Argentina was considered to be one of the ten wealthiest nations in the world in terms of per capita income.

Not more than 20 years later, a series of poorly executed policies begun primarily under the administration of Juan Peron — the nationalization of industries, expansion of state services and substantial overseas borrowing, as well as a period of bad leadership — began to undermine the economic prosperity of the country.

Unable to finance its spending, the government opted to inflate its way out of debt. This caused an astronomical wage and price inflation factor of 2.1 billion times original prices between 1976 and 1991. To give an example, a single one of the 5 Pesos Argentino gold coins pictured above now holds a modern purchasing-power equivalent to beyond 500 trillion the original, five peso coin denomination. Once an example of prosperity, Argentina’s currency failure set the stage for one of the most dramatic economic breakdowns of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

Reminiscent of early United States coinage, the popular Argentino is a beautifully designed coin with a representation of Liberty on the obverse, and Argentina’s coat of arms on the reverse. This coin is difficult to obtain in uncirculated condition.

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Historic gold Mexican 50 peso

photo of Mexican 50 peso gold coinMexican 50 pesos
Grade range: Uncirculated/Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted: 1921 to 1931
(Pre-1933 mintages only; no restrikes)
Actual Gold Content: 1.2057 troy ounce

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Less than 1/10 as many Mexico 50 pesos were struck as US $20 St. Gaudens during the 1920s alone. If you include the total mintage of $20 gold pieces across their 80 year production, the total population of Mexico 50 pesos is a mere 3% that of the $20 gold pieces. With premiums on uncirculated $20 gold pieces at times topping 50%, the opportunity for long-term premium growth in the Mexican 50 Pesos coins is notable. From 1921 to 1931, over 4.9 million 50 pesos were struck compared to nearly 50 million $20 St. Gaudens.*

Historical Note:

The 20th century is rife with examples of financial breakdown and Mexico’s rendezvous with economic disaster in 1994 is among the most instructive. The crisis began, as happens so often in these affairs, with a surprise announcement by Mexico’s government that the currency had been devalued. As soon as it was made public, depositors lined up at the banks to retrieve their money and inundated brokerages with sell orders. A general panic gripped the nation almost immediately. The inflation rate went to 50% overnight, and interest rates soared to 70%.

Only a proper diversification into gold well before the crisis emerged properly insulated savers from the devaluation’s pervasive reach into every area of the financial system. In many cases, those who managed to diversify did so in the physical gold former-coinage of the country. Immediately after the devaluation, the price of gold went from 1200 pesos per ounce to 2500 pesos, and from there it exceeded 3000 pesos in 1995, living up to its reputation as a safe-haven for investors.

In 1910 Mexico celebrated the Centennial of the beginning of its War of Independence with Spain. To commemorate the event, a giant column was erected in the middle of Mexico City with a statue of El Angel de la Independencia (The Angel of Independence), sitting atop. This 6.7-meter statue, constructed of Bronze and Gold, represents the “Winged Victory,” a Greek symbol for the goddess Nike (Victory). In her right hand the Angel holds a laurel crown, symbolizing Victory, while in her left she holds a broken chain, symbolizing Freedom.

*As a final note of clarification, the information above does not include re-strike versions of both the 50 pesos and 20 pesos. Both coins were heavily re-struck from 1944-1975, typically carrying the date 1947 in the case of the 50 pesos, and 1959 in the case of the 20 pesos. These re-strike coins are bullion items that carry lttle to no premium potential.

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Historic gold French Ceres gold coin

photo of French ceres 20 franc gold coin

French 20 Franc Ceres
Grade range:  Extra Fine/Almost Uncirculated
Minted 1849-1851
Actual Gold Content: .1867 troy ounces

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Due to their extremely short-lived mintage – just 3 years from 1849-1851 – the French Ceres is one of the hardest pre-1900 European coins to locate in quantity.  It consistently holds distinction as the least expensive pre-civil war antiquity on a per ounce basis – an unmatched opportunity for the gold investor seeking to combine historical intrigue and rarity with pure gold accumulation.

Artist rendering of Napoleon III, French emperorThe story behind the French Ceres gold coins is quite interesting. They were the primary coin issued during the Second Republic of France, which was established after the Revolution of 1848 ousted Emperor Louis Phillipe. After establishing a constitution, Prince Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte, nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte, became the first ever President to be elected by universal suffrage in France on December 10, 1848. Interestingly, though, the gold coin representing this period in France’s history does not bear the visage of Louis-Napoleon.

Rather, the coin’s obverse is the allegorical figure symbolizing the French Republic, referred to as “Marianne”. Her image is meant to resemble that of Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture, grain, and the love a mother bears for her child – hence the coin’s name. Ceres was beloved for her service to mankind in giving them the gift of the harvest, the reward for cultivation of the soil.

The Second Republic ultimately lasted just three years. When it became evident the French Parliament would block President Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte’s re-election bid in 1852, he promptly organized a coup in December 1851, seized power, re-wrote the constitution and declared himself emperor of France. Just like that, the Second Republic of France had ended, as did the mintage of the French Ceres gold coins.

In an interesting historical side note, Emperor Napoleon III claimed the throne of the Second Empire of France on December 2nd 1852, 48 years to the day after his Uncle, Napoleon I was crowned.

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Historic gold Uruguay 5 peso gold coin

photo of uruguay 5 peso gold coin

Uruguay 5 Peso
Grade range: Uncirculated/Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted: 1930
Actual Gold Content: .2501 troy ounce

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Listed in The Standard Catalogue of World Gold Coins as the only coin of its design type and minted in 1930 only, the catalogue notes: “Only 14,415 were released. Remainder withheld.” A hoard of roughly 80,000 coins (which comprised most of the remaining mintage) was released, rumor has it, by the Argentina Central Bank in 1998, and most of those coins were placed with private investors and collectors.  Add it up and you’ll quickly note that less than 100,000 total Uruguay 5 Pesos are known to exist, making them one of the most affordable true rarities in the gold market.  These coins rarely surface, and only in very small quantities, usually made available when early owners of the Argentine hoard pare down their holdings.  NGC places a sugested retail value of similar conditioned coins at $475 a piece.

Uruguay coat of armsHistorical Note: It seems to be the sad legacy of many Latin American currencies to suffer “an endless death” at the inflationary hands of their official custodians. And so it has been with the fate of the Uruguayan peso during the latter half of the 20th century. Today, after a more or less continuous battle with inflation in Uruguay, doing the calculations with spot gold at $1000 per ounce, each physical 5 Pesos gold coin retains the same purchasing power as would currently require 4,800,000,000 of the original “old pesos” issued 75 years ago.

In 1930, the Uruguayan peso was of slightly greater value than the U.S. dollar. (Twenty U.S. dollars were “pegged” to the 0.9675 troy ounces of gold contained in the $20 double-eagle gold piece, whereas twenty Uruguayan pesos were “pegged” to the 1.0004 troy ounces of gold contained in four of these 5-peso face value coins.) As inflation took its toll, the New Peso was introduced in 1975 to replace the old peso at a rate of 1 NP for 1,000 old pesos. But alas, the New Peso also fell victim to these same inflationary trends, and was itself supplanted in turn at a rate of 1-for-1000 NP in March 1993 by the “newer” peso which circulates today (as of April 2010) at 19 pesos per U.S. dollar (a net plunge, effectively, from near parity to 19 million old pesos per dollar!)

Examination of this coin reveals the words Republica Oriental Del Uruguay (Oriental Republic of Uruguay). The designation “Oriental” in the official name of Uruguay refers to the country’s location upon the eastern bank of the Uruguay River, which separates it from Argentina to the west. Comprised of a population exceeding 3.25 million largely derived from Spanish and Italian descent and occupying a landmass about the size of Oklahoma between Brazil and Argentina, Uruguayans, in fact, sometimes call themselves “Orientals.”

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Historic gold Italy 20 lira – VE

photo of Italy 20 lira victor emmanuele

Italy 20 Lira
(Victor Emanuele II)
Grade range: Almost Uncirculated/Uncirculated
Minted: 1861 – 1874
Actual Gold Content: .1867 troy ounce

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Italy 20 Lira Vittorio Emanuele Gold Coins are considerably scarcer than Umberto varieites, and generally only surface in small lots.  Though just over 10,000,000 were minted total during their 13 year production, only a fraction have survived into the modern era in collectible condition.  Such reality is evidenced by NGC’s suggested retail price of $700-$800 per coin in similar condition as those offered here.  The 20 Lira gold coins were minted to the Latin Monetary Union standard of .1867 ounces per coin, to facilitate cross border trade with the 20 Franc issues of other countries at that time (France, Switzerland, Belgium, etc.).

Victor Emanuele’s place in history is inextricably connected to that of Giuseppe Garibaldi, the Italian revolutionary leader with whom he collaborated to unite Italy under a single kingdom in the mid-19th century.  Prior to that, Italy was a loose confederation of states. Known among the Italian people as ‘the honest king,’ Victor Emmanuel became the symbol and central figure of the ‘Risorgimento,’ and spent the rest of his monarchy consolidating the new kingdom.

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Historic gold German 20 mark – Wilhelm I

German 20 Marks
(Wilhelm I)
Grade range: Extra Fine/Almost Uncirculated+
Minted 1871 – 1888
Actual Gold Content: .2304 troy ounce

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photo of German Kaiser Wilhelm the firstGerman 20 Mark Wilhelm I Gold Coins are subtantially scarcer than the more commonly seen Wilhelm II varieties.  While many millions were minted, a great many were lost through through the course of the two world wars that very few survived into the modern era.  NGC suggested retail for similarly conditioned coins is $385 a piece, a roughly $50 premium to those offered here.

Wilhelm Friedrich Ludwig (1797-1888) ascended to the Prussian throne in 1861. Showing little political interest, his primary goal upon gaining power was to reorganize and strengthen the Prussian army. He was met with opposition from the Prussian legislature, and his desire to remain politically neutral led to his appointment of Otto von Bismark as his prime minister in 1862. Bismark proved to be far more historically significant than Wilhelm I, engaging Prussia in a number of conflicts aimed at attaining the goal of a unified German Empire. Perhaps the most notable of these conflicts was the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71. Upon the defeat and surrender of Napoleon III at Sedan, Wilhelm I was proclaimed the first emperor of Germany (Kaiser) in 1871. These events, and the conflicts that ensued between Germany and France, eventually escalated into World War I.

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Historic gold Italian 20 lira

Photo of Italian 20 lira gold coin

Italian 20 Lira
Grade range: Uncirculated/Brilliant Uncirculated
Minted: 1880 – 1897
Actual Gold Content: .1867 troy ounce

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Table of Italian 20 lira mintagesThe number of Italian 20 Lira Gold Coins minted under the rule of King Umberto was relatively small when compared to other items in its genre (see mintage study to left).  Nearly all Italy 20 Lira featuring King Umberto that come to market are dated 1882. These items generally surface in a ‘proof-like’ uncirculated condition and are essential to any collection of 19th and 20th century gold coins. Despite the small mintage and generally high state of preservation, the pricing is favorable, making these one of the most coveted pre-1900 dated coins from the historic fractional genre.  The 20 Lira gold coins were minted to the Latin Monetary Union standard of .1867 ounces per coin, to facilitate cross border trade with the 20 Franc issues of other countries at that time (France, Switzerland, Belgium, etc.).

Umberto I, also known as Humbert I, was King of Italy from 1878 until his death in 1900. He was son to Victor Emmanuel II, who united Italy under a single kingdom during the ‘Risorgimento’ movement of the 19th century. Umberto I was the only modern King of Italy to die by assassination, killed by the Italo-American anarchist Gaetano Bresci. In history, Umberto I was referred to as “The Good” although he was wildly unpopular throughout his rule with left-wing circles. His assassination was said to be retribution for his praise of General Fiorenzo Bava-Beccaris’ restoration of order during an uprising in the city of Milan. In this uprising, Bava-Beccaris used a cannon against demonstrators protesting the rising cost of bread. Two assassination attempts on Umberto I immediately followed, with the third attempt ultimately claiming the King’s life in 1900.

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Historic gold French angel

Photo of french angel gold coin

French 20 Franc
(Angel)
Grade: Uncirculated
Minted 1878 – 1913
Actual Gold Content: .1867 troy ounce

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Table of French Angel mintagesOwning the famous French Angel 20 Franc Gold Coin has always been considered good luck. Legend has it that an earlier version accompanied Napoleon in his quest to conquer Europe. He carried it in the long march to Russia and back until he finally misplaced it — the day before the Battle of Waterloo. When the coin’s designer, Augustine Dupre, was sentenced to death, he held a gold Angel as he prayed for his life; it caught the eye of his guard, allowing him to ‘negotiate’ his escape from the guillotine.

The French Angel 20 Francs were minted in vast numbers over a great many years (see mintage study to right), beginning with a brief mintage prior to the Second French Republic (1849/50), followed by a reintroduction in 1871, that precipitated a more or less continous production over the ensuing 35 years.  Though one of the more common European coins by total mintage, they remain some of the most highly sought after and widely held historic world gold coins in existence.  As such, they are difficult to locate in quantity and even harder to find in a high state of preservation, making the Brilliant Uncirculated coins offered here truly exceptional.

The French Angel characterizes the ideals of the French Revolution. Symbolically, the angel depicted on the obverse represents the Spirit of France and he is shown on the coin writing the French Constitution. A rooster symbolizing vigilance appears next to the angel. Behind the angel stands the fasces or bundle of rods – a symbol of power previously carried by Roman magistrates. On top of the fasces is the Cap of Liberty, which also appears on U.S. coinage with the same meaning. The slogan; Liberte, Egalite, Fraternite appears on the reverse along with the date. The French Angel gold coins were minted to the Latin Monetary Union standard of .1867 ounces per coin, to facilitate cross border trade with the 20 Franc issues of other countries at that time (Switzerland, Belgium, Italy, etc.).

There are literally thousands of stories about the powers of the ‘French Angel.’ There are stories of people who claim their lives were saved during some tragic event to those who extol its healing powers from terminal cancer and other diseases. I have even found websites where many have told their stories. Never have I seen so much mysticism surrounding a numismatic coin. This is a coin that any collector can enjoy for its beauty, but the stories behind this coin really make it a collectors’ must have piece.

— Raymond Hanisco, Coin Collecting Editor, Bella Online.

 

 

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Silver peace dollars

photo of silver peace dollars

Silver Peace Dollars 
Grade: Uncirculated
Fineness: .900 pure silver
Net fine weight: .77343 troy ounces

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The U.S. Peace silver dollars were minted beginning just after the end of World War I — “the war to end all wars” — and was thus came to be known as the “Peace dollar.” It was minted from 1921 through 1935 to the same specifications as its predecessor, the Morgan silver dollar, and too, traces its ancestry to the legendary Spanish 8 reales that circulated in the American colonies prior to and during the Revolutionary War. The coins were minted at the Philadelphia, Denver, and San Francisco mints and over its lifetime roughly 190 million of the coin were produced. Of that number, experts believe that almost 80% were melted. In one notable instance, the government ordered the melting of 50 million silver dollars to provide electric conductors for the Manhattan Project in 1942. Many of the coins melted were believed to have been Peace dollars.

The official silver to gold ratio during the period of the coin’s production was sixteen to one meaning that the federal government officially sanctioned a monetary value of sixteen ounces of silver to one ounce of gold. The coins routinely trade individually, in rolls of twenty coins and bags of 1000 coins. The coin was designed by sculptor Anthony de Francisci. The obverse bears a representation of Lady Liberty similar to the Statue of Liberty and the reverse depicts an eagle perched on rock carrying an olive branch.

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.

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Silver Morgan Dollars

photo of Morgan silver dollarUnited States Morgan Silver Dollar
Grade:  Brilliant Uncirculated
Fineness: .900 pure silver
Silver content: .77343 troy ounces
Face value: One dolla

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The U.S. Morgan silver dollar is among the most famous, collected and accumulated silver coins ever minted. Produced by the United States Mint from 1878 to 1904 and again in 1921, the Morgan dollar bears a representation of Lady Liberty on its obverse and the American eagle on its reverse. Its monetary predecessor was the legendary Spanish 8 reales (or piece of eight) which circulated in the colonies before the establishment of the United States as a free republic in 1776. The coins were minted at the Philadelphia, Carson City, Denver, New Orleans and San Francisco mints and over the 27 years of its production nearly 650 million Morgan silver dollars were produced. Of that amount, experts estimate that roughly 17% have survived to present. The official silver to gold ratio during the period of the coin’s production was sixteen to one meaning that the federal government officially sanctioned a monetary value of sixteen ounces of silver to one ounce of gold. The coins routinely trade individually, in rolls of twenty coins and bags of 1000 coins. It is referred to as the Morgan silver dollar after its designer, George T. Morgan.

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.

 

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Silver bullion bars

photo of 100 ounce silver bullion barSilver Bullion Bars
Fineness: .999 pure
Weight:  100 troy ounces
Minted by various private refiners including Johnson Matthey,
Engelhard, Royal Canadian Mint and others

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One-hundred ounce silver bars are the most commonly traded silver bullion item. As with any precious metals bar, it is important to purchase exchange-approved brands as they enjoy the broadest liquidity. In fact, only exchange-approved bars are eligible for retirement plans including Individual Retirement Accounts. One hundred ounce bars are also manufactured by non-Comex approved refiners, but these are recommended only under special circumstances. Most investors avoid owning the one thousand ounce bars due to liquidity, shipping and storage problems. Ten ounce bars  are not manufactured regularly by exchange-approved refiners and are usually not as popular as the one-ounce coins for those interested in smaller sized units.

Before buying silver bars, we advise speaking with one of our representatives to learn more about this tricky area of the market. Generally speaking, we recommend the purchase of silver bars only when the bars are stored at a depository and never leave the storage account, as is the case with most retirement plan purchases. We do not gaurantee repurchase when a client takes delivery of the bars and then wishes to ship and liquidate.

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.

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Silver coin bag – United States pre-1965

photo of U.S. silver bag of coins $1000 face value

United States Pre-1965 Silver Coin Bag
($1000 face value)
Net silver content: 715 troy ounces
Fineness: .900
Dimes, quarter, half-dollars minted for circulation

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U.S. pre-1965 silver coins, also referred to as “junk bags,” are a popular diversification among silver owners. Generally, silver in this form is sold in $1000 face value bags weighing 715 fine troy ounces. Items included in this category are U.S. minted silver coins in dime, quarter and half-dollar denominations. $1000 face value bags of half-dollars are usually priced at slight premiums over the dime and quarter bags. Generally speaking, $1000 face value bags track the silver spot price and trade at reasonable premiums over their melt value. Though difficult to store and transport, this item remains a standard inclusion in many precious metals portfoliios.

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.

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Silver South African Krugerrand

photo of silver South African KrugerrandSouth African Silver Krugerrand 
Fineness: .999 pure silver
Weight: 1.0 troy ounce
Face value: 1 Rand

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In August 2018, for the first time in it’s 50+ year history, the South African mint released a Silver Krugerrand.  A one ounce coin minted to a purity of .999, the Silver Krugerrand mirrors it’s gold counterpart, with the reverse featuring the springbok and the obverse the bust of Paul Kruger, who played a significant role in South Africa gaining independence from Britain in the late 1800’s.  Offered at a slightly lower premium to the popular American Silver Eagle, the Silver Krugerrand is an attractice option for those looking to procure silver through one ounce government minted coins, at a slight lower cost per ounce.  Add in the intrigue of ‘first year of issue’, and these are a great option for building a position in silver, especially at current prices.

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.


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Silver Austrian Philharmonic

photo of silver Austrian PhilharmonicAustrian Philharmonic
(Silver)
Fineness: .999 pure silver
Weight: 1.0 troy ounce
(31.10 grams)
Face value: 1.50 Euro

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The Austrian (also Vienna) Philharmonic produced by the Austrian Mint (pictured left) is among the most artistically appealing of the bullion silver coins minted for the investment market. Struck in pure silver, investors have purchased many millions making it one of the most popular silver bullion coins currently available, and thebiggest seller in Europe. Its first year of issue was 2008.

Like its gold counterpart, the silver coin, designed by Thomas Pesendorfer, depicts an assortment of musical instruments, including a string bass, cellos, violins, a bassoon, a harp and a Viennese horn, on its reverse. The obverse of the coin shows the great organ of the Musikverein concert hall in Vienna, the home of the famed Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. The face value, weight, fineness and year of issue are also featured on this highly liquid legal tender coin.

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Modern Silver Bullion Coins

 

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Silver Canadian Maple Leaf

photo of silver Canadian Maple Leaf

Canadian Maple Leaf 
(Silver)
Fineness: .9999 pure silver
Weight: 1.0 troy ounce
(31.103 grams)
Face value: $5 

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Encouraged by the success of the Gold Maple Leaf, the Mint introduced Silver Maple Leaf Coins in 1988. The Silver Maple Leaf is minted with one troy ounce of 9999 fine silver. The coin has a face value of $5, the highest face value of any comparable silver bullion coin.

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.

USAGOLD's in depth special report on Modern Silver Bullion Coins


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Silver American Eagle

Photo of silver American Eagle

American Silver Eagle 
Fineness: .999 pure silver
Weight: 1.0 troy ounce
Face value: One Dollar

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American Silver Eagle Coins have been produced at the United States Mint at West Point and sold in both proof and bullion finishes since 1986. They have always featured a rendition of sculptor Adolph A. Weinman’s magnificent Walking Liberty design, originally prepared and executed for the Nation’s first circulating half-dollar coin in 1916… widely considered one of the most beautiful American coins ever minted.

Aside from the proof version, the United States Mint does not sell American Eagle Bullion coins directly to the public. Instead, the Mint distributes uncirculated Bullion coins through a network of wholesalers, brokerage companies, precious metal firms, coin dealers, and participating banks, a network known as Authorized Purchasers. A bullion coin is a coin that is valued by its weight in a specific precious metal. Unlike commemorative or numismatic coins valued by limited mintage, rarity, condition and age, bullion coins are purchased by investors seeking a simple and tangible means to own and invest in the gold, silver, and platinum markets.”

A Quick Note on Silver Prices:

The current ratio of gold to silver of roughly 85:1 is within throwing distance of most undervalued condition in the market’s history.  Even a return to the historic average of 62:1 would have remarkable implications for the silver price.  In fact, widely read technical analyst Clive Maund called the current silver market ‘The most bullish set up for silver that I have ever seen.”  For a more detailed review of silver ownership, we invite you to read our special report linked immediately below.

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Gold bullion bars

photo of gold bullion bars

Gold Bullion Bars
(Kilo – 32.15 troy ounces)
Refineries: PAMP, Credit Suisse, Johnson Matthey,
Royal Canadian Mint, Metalor etc.
Fineness: .999 to .9999

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Gold bars are produced in a wide variety of sizes, shape, and fineness, most of them destined for one-way transit to manufacturing end-users who intend to refabricate the gold into other forms such as industrial/electronic plating or decorative applications. Most gold bars are not intended for use as investment products (i.e., recirculated on the secondary public market) primarily because their authentic weight and purity both fall into question owing to the ease of tamperability once the bars have traveled outside of the original commercial chain of custody.

Generally speaking, we recommend the purchase of gold bars only when the bars are stored at a depository and never leave the storage account, as is the case with most retirement plan purchases. We do not gaurantee repurchase when a client takes delivery of the bars and then wishes to ship and liquidate. For the individual investor who demands more flexibility with regard to both portability and liquidity, gold coins fit the bill perfectly and are by far the most popular form of gold ownership.

 


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Gold Australian Kangaroo

photo of gold Australian Kangaroo

Australian Kangaroo
Fineness: .9999
Actual Gold Content: 1.0 troy ounce (31.103 grams)
Diameter: 32.1 mm
Face value: $100

(Also minted in 1/2, 1/4, 1/10 ounce sizes)

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The Australian Kangaroo, like the Chinese Panda, incorporates a different design each year. Only in Australia’s case it features the famous marsupial, after which it is named. First produced in 1989, the mintages are generally low when compared to other gold bullion coins — a feature that heightens its appeal as a collectors’ item.

The Kangaroo is a pure, legal-tender gold coin (.9999 fine) and comes in one-ounce (troy), half-ounce, quarter-ounce, tenth-ounce and twentieth-ounce sizes. The Kangaroo also comes uniquely in a kilo-sized gold coin weighing 32.15 ounces. The coins come in protective wrappers to protect the delicate pure gold surfaces. The obverse of the coin bears the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain. The coins are struck with their weight, the face value and the purity. All issues are struck by the Perth Mint and valued for their high-quality finish and artistic workmanship.

 

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Gold South African Krugerrand

photo of gold South African KrugerrandSouth African Gold Krugerrand
Fineness: .9167
Actual Gold Content: 1.0 troy ounce (31.103 grams)
(also minted in 1/2, 1/4, 1/10 troy ounce sizes)
Quantity Discounts offered on orders of 50 coins or more. Please call.

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The first South African Gold Krugerrands were minted in 1967 as a gold bullion coins, the value of which was based upon the international spot price of the metal. The concept of a one ounce gold coin tied to spot gold’s fluctuations quickly caught on. Nearly 50 million have been minted since 1967.

The Krugerrand is an alloyed coin at 22 karats, or .9167 purity. Denominated as one ounce of gold, it is struck with no face value indicated on the coin. Quite often contemporary investors purchasing Krugerrands are surprised to discover the coin they purchased bears a date other than the current year. This is testimony to the coin’s duration as a market item and the strong secondary market it enjoys.

Featured on the coin’s reverse is the springbok, a natural inhabitant of the dry savannahs able to run at speeds up to 80 km/hr and jump over 10 meters. The springbok is the icon of the national rugby team.

The Krugerrand was the first legal tender gold bullion coin to gain worldwide use in the modern era. To this day, many gold owners equate gold ownership with Krugerrand ownership. The Krugerrand as a bullion item received its first competition from the Canadian Maple Leaf, introduced in 1979. Eventually the Krugerrand was supplanted as the world’s top seller — in 1984 the U.S. Congress banned the import of the Krugerrand as part of the economic sanctions imposed on South Africa. The premium dropped to slightly-above the spot gold price and has only recently recovered in concert with the latest bull market rally in gold.

Historical Note: The history of South Africa is inextricably bound to gold. Since the time the metal was first discovered in the Transvaal by Alec “Wheelbarrow” Patterson in 1873, the international ebb and flow of gold’s fortunes figured directly in the fortunes of South Africa itself. The two Boer Wars in the late 19th century, between Dutch (Afrikaners) and British settlers, were essentially territorial battles over the South African gold fields. Paul Kruger, whose portrait graces the obverse of the famed Krugerrand bullion gold coin, led the Afrikaners and in 1883 became the first president of the new South African Republic. At the end of the 19th century, the Second Boer War culminated in defeat of the Afrikaners resulting in British accession to sovereignty.

Shortly thereafter, the Union of South Africa became the largest gold producing country in the world — a position it held for most of the 20th century with production at times accounting for as much as one-third the world’s total output. Now, the South African mines, some of the deepest in the world, are in decline, and South Africa ranks as the world’s seventh largest producer.

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Gold Austrian Philharmonic

Photo of gold Austrian PhilharmonicAustrian Philharmonic
Fineness: .9999
Actual Pure Gold Content: 1.0 troy ounce
Face value: 2000 schillings or 100 euro
(Also minted in 1/2, 1/4, 1/10 troy ounce sizes)
Quantity Discounts offered on orders of 50 coins or more.  Please call.

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The Austrian (also Vienna) Philharmonic is the best-selling gold coin in Europe. Attesting to its international popularity as one of the “pure gold coins” the Philharmonic led sales worldwide in 1992, 1995 and 1996, according to the World Gold Council. In 2008, at the height of the worldwide credit-financial crisis, more one-ounce Philharmonics were sold on a global basis than U.S. Eagles or Krugerrands. Like its competitors, the Philharmonic tracks the gold price and is internationally liquid.

As already mentioned, the Philharmonic is struck in pure, 24-karat gold. The obverse of the coin depicts the great organ in Vienna’s concert hall, home of the famed Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. The obverse shows a harmonious medley of musical instruments — a string base, cellos, violins, a bassoon, harp and Viennese horn. The Philharmonic is minted in one-ounce (troy), half-ounce, quarter-ounce and one-tenth ounce sizes with successive face values of 100, 50, 25 and 10 euros respectively. Earlier mintages before the creation of the euro were denominated in schillings.

In 2004, the Austrian Mint issued a 1000-ounce gold Philharmonic to mark the 15th anniversary of the popular bullion coin. It has a face value of 100,000 euros. Fifteen coins were struck and they sold out within two weeks of offer. The relief on the coin was sculpted by computer and finished by hand. Each coin took 130 hours to mint. Not to be mistaken for pocket change, the 1000-ounce Philharmonic is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s largest gold coin.

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Gold Canadian Maple Leaf

Photo of gold Canadian Maple LeafCanadian Gold Maple Leaf
Fineness: .9999
Actual Gold Content: 1.0 troy ounce
Face value: $50
(also minted in 1/2, 1/4, 1/10 troy ounce sizes)
Quantity Discounts offered on orders of 50 coins or more.  Please call.

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Canada made its entry in the competitive bullion gold coin market in 1979 with the Maple Leaf, the first pure gold bullion coin — a concept which quickly garnered a significant share of market interest. In early advertisements, Maple Leaf coins were pictured flowing from a gold bullion bar — an artifice which effectively made the point that bullion gold coins’ pricing was related to the spot price. At the time of its unveiling, the Maple Leaf’s only competitor was the South African Krugerrand — a coin alloyed with copper to 22 karat. It is produced in one-ounce, one-half ounce, quarter-ounce and one-tenth ounce sizes.

Early Maple Leaf bullion coins were minted at .999 purity, but in 1982 the Royal Canadian Mint went to the .9999 pure gold coin — the standard to which it produces coins today. Each coin bears the .9999 purity stamp along with the date, the weight and the face value. The Canadian Maple Leaf is a legal tender gold coin — a status that allows it to be used as currency and in debt settlements. The earlier issues with the .999 stamp trade at a discount to the later mintages.

The Maple Leaf gold coins were a major beneficiary of the credit and financial crisis which began in 2008. That year the Royal Canadian Mint reported an unprecedented jump in bullion coin sales — from 278,600 ounces in 2007 to 896,000 in 2008. Whereas the other national mints had trouble keeping up with demand, the Winnipeg mint seemed much better equipped to deal with the onslaught, and Maple Leaf availability remained steady throughout the 2007-2009 period.

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Gold American Buffalo

photo of gold American Buffalo

 

American Gold Buffalo 
Gold Content: 1.0 troy ounce
Fineness: .9999
Quantity Discounts offered on orders of 50 coins or more.  Please call.

Questions?  Give us a call or send us an email.  Market insight, analysis & guidance from real experts with real experience. 46 years in business.  A+ BBB.  Zero complaints.


The American Gold Buffalo Bullion Coins are struck by the United States Mint’s facility at West Point and have the distinction of being the first pure gold (.9999 fine, 24-karat gold) coins ever struck by the U.S. Mint for public sale as an investment product. Production of these coins was authorized by the Presidential $1 Coin Act (Public Law 109-145, dated December 22, 2005) which provides for gold bullion to be minted in the form of $50 legal tender coins, conveying that the content and purity is guaranteed by the United States Government.

According to the official U.S. Mint press release on June 20, 2006:

“This American Buffalo Gold Coin will appeal to both investors who choose to hold gold and to others who simply love gold,” said Deputy Director David A. Lebryk during the ceremonial striking at the United States Mint at West Point, where the coins are being produced. “These classic and beautiful American Indian and buffalo designs by James Earle Fraser [a student of Augustus Saint-Gaudens], which have been American favorites since they were first used in 1913, recall a golden age of coin artistry.”

[These bullion coins] portray the images of the revered Buffalo Nickel of 1913, Type 1. The iconic James Earle Fraser image of an American bison graces the reverse (tails side), and Fraser’s classic design of an American Indian is featured on the obverse (heads side). The American Buffalo Gold Coin has inscriptions of the coin’s weight, denomination and gold content incused on the reverse (Buffalo side) in the design area commonly known as the “grassy mound.”


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GoldAmericanEagle

Photo Gold American Eagle American Gold Eagle
Gold Content: 1.0 troy ounce
Fineness: .916
(also available in 1/2, 1/4, 1/10 troy ounce sizes)

Quantity Discounts offered on orders of 50 ounces or more.  Please call.

Questions?  Give us a call or send us an email.  Market insight, analysis & guidance from real experts with real experience. 46 years in business.  A+ BBB.  Zero complaints.
____________________________________________________________________

The American Gold Eagle bullion coin is the most popular among investors in the United States. Over 13 million of the one-ounce coin have been minted and distributed since the coin was introduced in 1986. In 2009 alone, 1,493,000 American gold eagles were produced. In 2008, at the height of the credit-financial crisis, the mint was forced to go to an allocation system because it could not keep up with burgeoning demand. Still, it produced 710,000 one-ounce coins during the course of the year. By way of comparison, the U.S. Mint produced a little over 140,000 one-ounce coins during the relatively quiet year of 2007.

The 1986 American Eagle began life as an idea presented by Congressman Ron Paul to President Ronald Reagan’s Gold Commission in 1981. Congress enacted the “Gold Bullion Act of 1985” and quickly thereafter the Eagle became one of the most popular gold coins in the world. The Gold Bullion Act stipulates that the gold used for producing American Eagles comes from newly mined sources within the United States.

The obverse depicts lady liberty striding from the coin — a reproduction of Augustus St. Gaudens’ famous design for the Double Eagle commissioned by President Theodore Roosevelt in the early 20th century. The reverse displays a family of gold eagles with the male carrying an olive branch and flying above the nest, the fine gold weight of the coin and its face value.

American eagles are legal tender coins minted in one-ounce, half-ounce, quarter-ounce and tenth-ounce sizes. Produced at the West Point Mint, it is an alloyed coin at 22 karats, or .916 fine. The 1986 to 1991 mintages have Roman numeral dates. Arabic numeral dates are used on successive mintages.


USAGOLD's in depth special report on Modern Gold Bullion Coins


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Modern Silver Bullion Coins

Modern Silver Bullion Coins

‘Poor man’s gold’ as a long term store of value and safe-haven

photo of pile of modern silver bullion coins

 

Silver’s history as money goes back 5000 years, according to New York University professor of finance and economics, William Silber*. “In fact, if you go back to biblical Egypt,” he says, “it was silver that was used in transactions. There wasn’t enough gold to be used by most people, so silver for thousands of years was the main medium of exchange. Only in the 19th century did we switch over to the gold standard. Britain led the world in that. But silver had been the main currency of the world for thousands of years.”

In the time of imperial Rome, the citizenry used gold to hedge the debasement of silver money.  Today, the citizenry use silver to hedge the debasement of paper money.  Its role as a crisis hedge goes beyond just inflation, though, to address the disinflationary risks common to the modern economy – a credit crisis or stock and bond market meltdown. As such, the popularity of contemporary silver bullion coins, like the American Eagle, the Canadian Maple Leaf, the Austrian Philharmonic, Australian Kangaroo and the recently introduced Silver Krugerrand, has risen dramatically over the years and particularly since the economic crisis of 2008.

In 2006, silver traded in the $11 to $13 range and the United States Mint produced 10 million  American Silver Eagles. In 2011 at the height of the crisis, silver had climbed to $46 per ounce and the mint had produced 40 million American Silver Eagles to meet soaring investor demand.  Though the crisis calmed after 2011, investor nervousness remained and volumes never returned to the pre-crisis levels. Silver today is routinely accumulated for monetary purposes and much of the discussion at this website about gold’s qualities as a long-term store of value and safe haven apply to silver as well.  In the process, it has regained its reputation as ‘poor man’s gold.’

“The chances of silver returning as backing to the currency is relatively small,” says professor Silber. “It’s not zero; it’s relatively small. I say it’s relatively small because the central banks of the world have been doing a pretty good job of controlling inflation. But there’s always a chance that we have a problem. We had a big problem 10 years ago in 2008. We had the Great Recession, which brought us to the brink of financial collapse, and silver quadrupled in value between 2008 and 2011. Gold doubled in value. Silver is much more volatile, and that volatility serves you well if you have some silver as portfolio insurance. A small amount in your portfolio. Five percent of your net worth could be in silver and some gold in order to prepare for the possibility of a financial disaster.”

That volatility is an important factor on both the upsides and the downsides. A correct call could help you net more profit than if you had purchased gold alone. A bad call could cost you dearly. At this point in time, though, silver enjoys the benefit of a deeply skewed gold-silver ratio. At present, it takes 85 ounces of silver to buy an ounce of gold, the highest ratio since the early 1990s. By way of perspective, in 2010 (two years after the Lehman Brothers collapse), it reached a ratio of 30 to one. Such a variance hints at silver’s performance potential vis a vis gold for those with a speculative bent and an understanding of precious metals’ role as a crisis hedge. That said, we do not advocate silver at the exclusion of gold, but more as an adjunct through which the investor conceivably can get more bang for his or her buck if history repeats and silver outperforms gold.

Gold-Silver Ratio
Chart by TradingView

Silver’s major drawback is in its storage and transportation. It is a bulky, heavy investment. Even at current prices, moving $100,000 worth of the metal is an effort, and its owners often complain about the difficulty of preparing large amounts of silver for shipment when they wish to sell. This limits its usage among those who like to have their metal stored nearby. More and more, though, investors with larger sums to invest are utilizing storage programs with well-known depositories to circumvent the shipping and storage problems.

USAGOLD offers silver storage accounts  – a program many of our clientele put to good use. This gives the investor the opportunity to speculate on the price and move in and out of ownership positions with a phone call. The metal is kept in an allocated account in the customer’s name. Account owners pay fees that cover insurance and storage, but those costs are relatively minor. In addition, most depository programs offer the option of taking delivery if the owner so desires. Because of the same problem with assaying and potential tampering or counterfeiting encountered in gold bars, we usually recommend that the purchase of one-ounce bullion coins, usually silver American Eagles or Canadian Maple Leafs.  A large percentage of our orders for silver come from investors with IRAs and other retirement plans – a circumstance where the metal is stored (rather than delivered) anyway.

Last, we would be remiss if we did not mention that because the demand for silver bullion coins is global in scope, shortages can develop quickly in times of stress and drive premiums significantly higher.  Such a premium increase can be of great benefit to those who already own silver bullion coins, but a great detriment to those in the market as buyers. The best course of action is to purchase ahead of a crisis instead of in the middle of it. Take to heart the old saying that the best time to buy precious metals is when things are quiet.

The “Modern Silver Bullion Coins and Bars ” section of our Online Order Desk offers a gateway to reviewing and ordering these items. We augment our current selections with periodic ‘Special Offers‘ of specially-priced items. These offers usually sell out quickly so time is of the essence if something sparks an interest. Please note that Online Order Desk registrants and regular clientele receive notifications of ‘Special Offers‘ by e-mail. If you are not a client but would like to receive offer notifications, the best course of action is to sign up for access to the Online Order Desk. By doing so you will be included automatically on our mailing list and also, as an added benefit, receive access to our members only Premium Bulletin Board at no cost or obligation.

* Please see White Hot: How Silver Forged the World’s Economy/William Silber, Professor of Finance and Economics, New York University

 [Please see our Full Risk Disclosure here.]


Graphic of USAGOLD client portal connection. Ready to invest. Start here.
A word on USAGOLD
– USAGOLD ranks among the most reputable gold companies in the United States. Founded in the 1970s and still family-owned, it is one of the oldest and most respected names in the gold industry. USAGOLD has always attracted a certain type of investor – one looking for a high degree of reliability and market insight coupled with a professional client (rather than customer) approach to precious metals ownership. We are large enough to provide the advantages of scale, but not so large that we do not have time for you. (We invite your visit to the Better Business Bureau website to review our five-star, zero-complaint record. The report includes a large number of verified customer reviews.)


Graphic of Online Order Desk Connection: Great prices. Quick delivery. All the time.

ORDER DESK
1-800-869-5115 Ext#100
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Disclaimer – Opinions expressed on the USAGOLD.com website do not constitute an offer to buy or sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any precious metals product, nor should they be viewed in any way as investment advice or advice to buy, sell or hold. USAGOLD, Inc. recommends the purchase of physical precious metals for asset preservation purposes, not speculation. Utilization of these opinions for speculative purposes is neither suggested nor advised. Commentary is strictly for educational purposes, and as such USAGOLD does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information found here.


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Modern Gold Bullion Coins

Modern Gold Bullion Coins

Portable, Liquid, and a Reliable Measure of Value

photo stack of modern gold bullion coins

From the time of Lydia’s Croesus, who was the first to mint gold coins (and from whom the legend of the Midas Touch evolved), the coining of gold served to standardize weight and purity and thus to facilitate trade and commerce. Modern gold bullion coins are the descendants of the coins first minted by Croesus.

Gold for investment purposes is manufactured in two forms: coin and bar. Most of the gold owned by private investors around the world, however, is in the form of coins because of their portability and liquidity; that is, they can be converted to currency with ease. A third reason why coins are the preferred vehicle for gold ownership is that the minted coin is a standardized measure of weight and purity that current and future owners can rely on for value.

One of the first questions most prospective investors ask is, “What should I buy?” A good starting point is gold bullion coins like the American Eagle, the American Buffalo, the Austrian Philharmonic, the South African Krugerrand, the Australian Kangaroo and the Canadian Maple Leaf. In contrast, jewelry, artistic objects, or very rare gold collectible coins should not be used for basic asset preservation because their gold value makes up such a small part of their overall value.

Many first-time investors believe gold is purchased in the form of the bullion bars depicted in the movies, but in the real world most investors buy one-ounce bullion coins. Most experts recommend that investors avoid bullion bars. Although the commission and markups are marginally less on bars than on coins, complications come into play when the time comes to sell bullion. Most dealers will want to see the bars before they buy them because of problems with counterfeiting. Some will not buy without an assay, a chemical analysis that determines the gold’s purity.

In most cases, gold firms will not set the resale price until the bars have been delivered to their location or depository for inspection. This presents difficulties if the client is anxious to capture a price and finds out that it can’t be done until after the buyer has received the bars.  Similarly, bullion bars could also present problems for those wishing to trade gold for merchandise in the event of an economic breakdown, because the individual receiving the gold bullion has no way of knowing whether the bars are real or counterfeit.

Holding gold bars in depository accounts – a situation that arises with Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), other retirement and pension plans, or depository accounts held for trading purposes—circumvents the liquidation and assaying problem in most instances. If the gold never leaves the account, in other words, if the client does not take delivery, the metal usually can be liquidated without an assay. If the owner decides to take delivery, I generally recommend exchanging the bullion bars for gold coins as a way to facilitate future liquidation.

Because of these trade and exchange difficulties, we usually counsel buyers to avoid bullion bars. The marginal added cost on bullion coins is a small price to pay when weighed against the potential disadvantages of owning bars.  Gold bullion coins track the gold price up and down, are dated with their year of manufacture, trade at marginal premiums over their gold melt value, and are very difficult to counterfeit. In addition, they enjoy a ready two-way market globally. These coins are manufactured at the national mints of various countries—West Point (the United States), Winnipeg (Canada), Pretoria (South Africa), Vienna (Austria), and Perth (Australia)

With some exceptions, gold bullion coins trade at most retail firms at 5% to 7% over the gold price. This premium above the gold price consists of wholesale markup, retail markup, and seigniorage. Seigniorage is a charge the mint places on the coin to cover manufacturing costs and profits. It usually averages in the 2.5% to 3.5% range. Wholesalers add about 0.5% to 1%. Retail brokers and dealers usually add commissions from 1% to 3%, depending on the size of the order and other factors.

Along with standard one-ounce coins, most mints also manufacture gold coins in smaller denominations of one- half, one-fourth, and one-tenth ounce. Because it costs approximately the same amount of money to manufacture any coin no matter the size, the smaller the coin the greater the premium per ounce.

Last, because the demand for gold bullion coins is global in scope, shortages can develop quickly in times of stress and drive premiums significantly higher. The best course of action is to purchase ahead of a crisis instead of in the middle of it. Take to heart the old saying that the best time to buy gold is when things are quiet.

The Modern Gold Bullion Coins and Bars section of our Online Order Desk offers a gateway to reviewing and ordering these items. We augment our current selections with periodic ‘Special Offers‘ of specially-priced items. These offers usually sell out quickly so time is of the essence if something sparks an interest. Please note that Online Order Desk registrants and regular clientele receive notifications of ‘Special Offers‘ by e-mail. If you are not a client but would like to receive offer notifications, the best course of action is to sign up for access to the Online Order Desk. By doing so you will be included automatically on our mailing list and also, as an added benefit, receive access to our members only Premium Bulletin Board at no cost or obligation.

 [Please see our Full Risk Disclosure here.]


Graphic of USAGOLD client portal connection. Ready to invest. Start here.
A word on USAGOLD
– USAGOLD ranks among the most reputable gold companies in the United States. Founded in the 1970s and still family-owned, it is one of the oldest and most respected names in the gold industry. USAGOLD has always attracted a certain type of investor – one looking for a high degree of reliability and market insight coupled with a professional client (rather than customer) approach to precious metals ownership. We are large enough to provide the advantages of scale, but not so large that we do not have time for you. (We invite your visit to the Better Business Bureau website to review our five-star, zero-complaint record. The report includes a large number of verified customer reviews.)


Graphic of Online Order Desk Connection: Great prices. Quick delivery. All the time.

ORDER DESK
1-800-869-5115 Ext#100
orderdesk@usagold.com


Disclaimer – Opinions expressed on the USAGOLD.com website do not constitute an offer to buy or sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any precious metals product, nor should they be viewed in any way as investment advice or advice to buy, sell or hold. USAGOLD, Inc. recommends the purchase of physical precious metals for asset preservation purposes, not speculation. Utilization of these opinions for speculative purposes is neither suggested nor advised. Commentary is strictly for educational purposes, and as such USAGOLD does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information found here.

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Historic U.S. $20 Gold Pieces

Historic U.S. $20 Gold Pieces
A solid hedge and  potential profit-maker under a variety of economic scenarios

Image of group of $20 St. Gaudens gold coins in PCGS holders, grades MS 63, MS 64, MS 65

Here at USAGOLD, we see 19th and 20th century-minted U.S. $20 gold pieces as a “diversification within a diversification” – something to augment the overall gold portfolio and provide an investor the opportunity for premium gains above and beyond what an ordinary investment in gold bullion coins might provide.  This sector offers the potential for strong investment performance under a variety of economic scenarios. As shown in the chart below, it performed extraordinarily well during our last close encounter with runaway inflation in the 1970s (#1 and #2). It performed equally as well during the 1980s stock bull market (#3) based purely on a wave of speculative demand detached from any negative economic scenario. Last, it performed well during the disinflationary 2008 financial breakdown (#4).

line chart showing the premium history on $20 St. Gaudens graded set 2007 to present
Click to enlarge

Adding to the appeal at this point in time, these items can be purchased at rock-bottom premiums well below their historic average. In the past, premiums have pushed the value to two and sometimes even three times or more their gold content. At present, the premium on the five-coin set pictured above is hovering near all-time lows. (See chart below)  On some individual items, the gold value is as high as 70% to 80% of the selling price. As a result, these items will rise or fall with the gold price (although not in direct sync), but can also increase in value if premiums are pushed higher by an influx of new investors – a low-risk, double-play profit potential.

Given the versatility of U.S. $20 gold pieces as a hedge and potential profit-maker, we believe that patient precious metals investor could be well-served by a commitment to this sector of the gold market.  Any sudden influx of capital into this relatively thin market area could send prices higher in rapid fashion. The confluence of positive factors outlined above is unique to the present and there is no guarantee that it will remain in place for long.

line chart showing price history of $20 Liberty five coin set 2000 to present

Click to enlarge

The “Historic U.S. Gold Coins” section of our Online Order Desk offers a gateway to reviewing and ordering these items. We augment our current selections with periodic ‘Special Offers‘ of scarcer, more difficult-to-obtain items. These offers usually sell out quickly so time is of the essence if something sparks an interest. Please note that Online Order Desk registrants and regular clientele receive notifications of ‘Special Offers‘ by e-mail. If you are not a client but would like to receive offer notifications, the best course of action is to sign up for access to the Online Order Desk. 

 [Please see our Full Risk Disclosure here.]


You can order these items by type and grade or in sets
as pictured at the top of this alert.

photo of three United States gold coins, $20 gold pieces ORDER DESK
1-800-869-5115 x100
(8 am to 7 pm MT weekdays)

Or visit our
Online Order Desk
Historic U.S. Gold Coins
Live prices. Order anytime.


Graphic of Client Portal connection: Ready to invest. Start here

A word on USAGOLD – USAGOLD ranks among the most reputable gold companies in the United States. Founded in the 1970s and still family-owned, it is one of the oldest and most respected names in the gold industry. USAGOLD has always attracted a certain type of investor – one looking for a high degree of reliability and market insight coupled with a professional client (rather than customer) approach to precious metals ownership. We are large enough to provide the advantages of scale, but not so large that we do not have time for you. (We invite your visit to the Better Business Bureau website to review our five-star, zero-complaint record. The report includes a large number of verified customer reviews.)


Disclaimer – Opinions expressed on the USAGOLD.com website do not constitute an offer to buy or sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any precious metals product, nor should they be viewed in any way as investment advice or advice to buy, sell or hold. USAGOLD, Inc. recommends the purchase of physical precious metals for asset-preservation purposes, not speculation. Utilization of these opinions for speculative purposes is neither suggested nor advised. Commentary is strictly for educational purposes and, as such, USAGOLD does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information found here. (Please see our Risk Disclosure here.)

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Historic world gold coins

Historic World Gold Coins

A potentially rich vein of opportunity for today’s gold investors

photo of European gold coin pile

Historic world gold coins from the mid-19th to early 20th century offer one of the great largely untouched and potentially lucrative opportunities in the field of gold investing today. There are four ways in which investors might benefit from owning these items beyond their appeal as a store of value.

– At a minimum, because these items historically track the gold price, the owner would benefit directly from a resumption of gold’s secular bull market. Gold is coming off a long period of consolidation and a good many analysts believe it is on the cusp of a major turnaround.

– Second, because the supply is fixed and limited to surviving specimens, premiums could increase as investor demand increases. In the wake of the 2007-2008 financial meltdown, for example, the premium on many historic gold coins in uncirculated condition rose to 30% over melt value. Those same items today trade routinely at premiums of 14% or less over their melt value. Similar instances of premium appreciation occurred in the late 1960s and early 1970s during the period of transition to the post-Bretton Woods monetary system and in the late 1990s Y2K scare.

– Third, many of the historical world gold coins are actually quite scarce by definition even though they trade at only minor premiums over the more common coins from the same era. Accumulating low mintage varieties, items of greater antiquity and assembling sets by mint mark, type and sequential dates are just a few of the affordable and achievable enhancements investors can pursue that might add collector value in the future. The notion that historic world gold coins could become collectors’ items has its origins in the 1950s and 1960s when shrewd accumulators acquired quality specimens of gold and silver U.S. coins from late 19th and early 20th century in bulk at slight premiums over the bullion price. Those collector/investors experienced multiple returns later in the 1970s and 1980s when a strong market developed emphasizing grade and relative scarcity.

– Last, as historic gold coins with a provenance dating before 1933, they fall within the category of items excluded from the U.S. government seizure of gold in 1933 and the subsequent ownership ban of gold bullion that extended to 1975. We view a gold seizure as a possibility, rather than a probability, and see historic gold coins as an important and cost-effective hedge for those interested in addressing those concerns within their gold holdings. Over the years, and particularly since the 2008 financial crisis, our firm has placed tens of thousands of these items with gold owners who are concerned about this possibility.

The “Historic Fractional Gold Coins” section of our Online Order Desk offers a gateway to reviewing and ordering these items. We offer current selections on a day-to-day basis under two broad categories labeled as ‘Popular Choices‘ and ‘Select Inventory‘. Availability on particular items changes from time to time as new lots become available and extant offers disappear into private holdings. We augment our current selections with periodic ‘Special Offers‘ of scarcer, more difficult-to-obtain items. These offers usually sell out quickly so time is of the essence if something sparks an interest.*

A few caveats are in order. First, there is no way of knowing for certain if the advantages of a collector market will develop in historic world gold coins as they did in U.S. coins in the 1970s and 1980s. Second, though premiums can rise during times of increased demand, they can also fall during times of decreased demand. Third, we cannot guarantee that these items would be passed over in the event new capital controls on gold including a seizure or quarantine. [Please see our Full Risk Disclosure here.]


* Please note that Online Order Desk registrants and regular clientele receive notifications of ‘Special Offers’ by e-mail. If you are not a client but would like to receive offer notifications, the best course of action is to sign up for access to the Online Order Desk. By doing so you will be included automatically on our mailing list and also, as an added benefit, receive access to our members only Premium Bulletin Board at no cost or obligation.


Related reading: Preparing for a Potential Gold Confiscation/George Cooper, JD/USAGOLD/2013. Also, The five best options for hedging a gold seizure/Michael J. Kosares


You can review and order historic European gold coins anytime
at our Online Order Desk

photo of three pre-1933 European gold coins - British sovereign, Swiss 20 franc, Dutch 10 guilder Phone Orders
1-800-869-5115 x100
(8am to 7pm MT weekdays)


Graphic of Client Portal connection: Ready to invest. Start here.

A word on USAGOLD – USAGOLD ranks among the most reputable gold companies in the United States. Founded in the 1970s and still family-owned, it is one of the oldest and most respected names in the gold industry. USAGOLD has always attracted a certain type of investor – one looking for a high degree of reliability and market insight coupled with a professional client (rather than customer) approach to precious metals ownership. We are large enough to provide the advantages of scale, but not so large that we do not have time for you. (We invite your visit to the Better Business Bureau website to review our five-star, zero-complaint record. The report includes a large number of verified customer reviews.)


Disclaimer – Opinions expressed on the USAGOLD.com website do not constitute an offer to buy or sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any precious metals product, nor should they be viewed in any way as investment advice or advice to buy, sell or hold. USAGOLD, Inc. recommends the purchase of physical precious metals for asset-preservation purposes, not speculation. Utilization of these opinions for speculative purposes is neither suggested nor advised. Commentary is strictly for educational purposes and, as such, USAGOLD does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information found here. (Please see our Risk Disclosure here.)


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Get the jump on inflation

Get the jump on inflation with an investment in graded, historic U.S. $20 gold pieces

CLIENT ALERT

“Capital was preserved by those who early changed it into objects of lasting value – rare coins, stamps, jewelry, works of art, antiques – or into merchandise such as clothing, fabrics, etc. Of course, most people did not understand the advantage of accumulating such property until the inflation was well along. By that time the prices of all goods had risen so much that they seemed outrageously bad bargains. In the event, however, cash proved an even worse bargain.” – Scientific Market Analysis, “The Nightmare German Inflation (1970)

Inflation has become a subject of much interest in the past several weeks with many analysts predicting its return after a long absence. In a recent Bloomberg editorial (Inflation is coming thanks to Trump’s tariffs), Barry Ritholtz, the well-known financier and frequent television commentator, summed up what a good many economists are thinking.

“For a long time,” he says, “I have been in the low-inflation-for-longer camp. Changing facts, including new tariffs and an escalation of the easily winnable trade war, have caused me to rethink that position. Barring a major shift away from the Trump administration’s trade policies, higher prices in lots of things are increasingly likely in the near future.” He concludes that “the facts have changed, and therefore we should be ready to change our minds.”

Historically rare coins as a grouping have enjoyed a well-earned reputation as an inflation hedge. USAGOLD has had direct experience in that regard as we recommended this investment area during the 1970s’ inflation and the accompanying coin market boom – a strategy we suggested then as “a diversification within a diversification.” This time around, however, we suggest acquisitions in a narrower frame of reference – common-date, historic U.S. $20 gold pieces from the late 19th and early 20th centuries in higher states of preservation, not high-end numismatics.

There are four ways in which the investor might benefit from owning these items beyond our standard recommendation of precious metals primarily as a store of value and for asset preservation purposes. [Please see our Full Risk Disclosure here.]

First, historic U.S. gold coins outperformed gold during the 1970s’ runaway inflation. A $10,000 investment in gold bullion made in 1970 would have been valued at about $200,000 by 1980 while the same investment in collectible U.S. gold coins would have been valued at $350,000.

Second, these items can be purchased now at rock-bottom premiums well below their historic average. At times in the past – even at times when inflation was not a factor – premiums, have pushed the value to two and sometimes even over three-times their gold content. At present, the premium on the five-coin set pictured above is hovering near all-time lows. (See chart below)

Third, we believe that the present high gold content for these items in proportion to the overall price offers a unique advantage. In some cases, the gold value is as high as 70% to 80% of the selling price. As a result, the investor may be exposed to a low-risk, double-play profit potential – an item that could rise first and foremost with the gold price and secondarily increase in value if premiums are pushed higher by an influx of new investors.  The two working together would produce an ideal outcome.

Fourth, the history of this gold sector suggests the potential for strong investment performance under a variety of economic scenarios, not just inflation. As shown in the chart below, generic gold coins (the sector which includes 19th and 20th century $20 gold pieces) performed extraordinarily well during our last close encounter with runaway inflation in the 1970s (#1 and #2). It performed equally as well during the 1980s bull market (#3) based purely on a wave of speculative demand detached from any negative economic scenario. Last, it performed well during the disinflationary 2008 financial breakdown (#4). In short, even if inflation fails to materialize, this investment could come out a winner for entirely unforeseen reasons.


Chart courtesy of the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS)

Conclusion
We believe – given the recent resurgence of inflationary concerns for the American economy – that precious metals investors would be well-served by a commitment to this sector of the gold market. The level of allocation depends upon several factors that should be discussed with your representative. If you have physical gold positions acquired above current prices, you might want to explore with your representative the benefits of a swap.

We underscore Scientific Market Analysis’ advice that “capital was preserved by those who early changed it into objects of lasting value” with special emphasis on the word early. Inflation has a history of surfacing forcefully and unexpectedly and any sudden influx of capital into this relatively thin market area could send prices higher in rapid fashion. The confluence of positive factors outlined above is unique to the present and there is no guarantee that it will remain in place for long.

–– Michael J. Kosares


You can order these items by type and grade or in sets
as pictured at the top of this alert.

ORDER DESK
1-800-869-5115 x100
(8am to 7pm MT weekdays)

Or visit our
Online Order Desk
Historic U.S. Gold Coins
Live prices. Order anytime.


A word on USAGOLD – USAGOLD ranks among the most reputable gold companies in the United States. Founded in the 1970s and still family-owned, it is one of the oldest and most respected names in the gold industry. USAGOLD has always attracted a certain type of investor – one looking for a high degree of reliability and market insight coupled with a professional client (rather than customer) approach to precious metals ownership. We are large enough to provide the advantages of scale, but not so large that we do not have time for you. (We invite your visit to the Better Business Bureau website to review our five-star, zero-complaint record. The report includes a large number of verified customer reviews.)


Disclaimer – Opinions expressed on the USAGOLD.com website do not constitute an offer to buy or sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any precious metals product, nor should they be viewed in any way as investment advice or advice to buy, sell or hold. USAGOLD, Inc. recommends the purchase of physical precious metals for asset-preservation purposes, not speculation. Utilization of these opinions for speculative purposes is neither suggested nor advised. Commentary is strictly for educational purposes and, as such, USAGOLD does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information found here. (Please see our Risk Disclosure here.)


Michael J. Kosares is the founder of USAGOLD and the author of The ABCs of Gold Investing – How to Protect and Build Your Wealth With Gold [Third Edition]. He is also editor and commentator for USAGOLD’s Live Daily Newsletter and editor of the News & Views monthly newsletter.

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1-800-869-5115
Extension #100
8:00 am to 7:00 pm MT weekdays

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ORDER DESK
Great prices. Quick delivery. All the time.
Modern gold and silver bullion coins
Historic fractional gold coins (bullion-related)
Historic U.S. gold coins
________

CURRENT PRICES
12:51 pm Wed. January 19, 2022


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Live Prices • Order Anytime

American Eagle
$2,001.07
American Buffalo
$1,961.46
Canadian Maple Leaf
$1,945.74
So African Krugerrand
$1,964.18


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Since 1991 • Zero Complaints

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