The United States Mint was created in 1792, as decreed by the Constitution.
“The Congress shall have the Power . . . To Coin Money.” (Constitution of the United States, Article I, Section 8.) The mint has been producing gold and silver bullion coins ever since.
Two U.S. gold coins are available for gold investors to own: the very popular American Eagle bullion gold coins and the American Buffalo 24-karat gold coins.
Unlike other collectible gold coins whose values are based on limited mintage, rarity, condition and age, bullion gold coins are valued by the weight of a coin’s fine gold, often stated and imprinted on the coin.
American Eagle bullion gold coins have four different sizes in weight that measures the content of the fine gold: one ounce, one-half ounce, one-quarter ounce, and one-tenth ounce. The various weights make it flexible to fit into different investors’ different budgets.
Although the value of the coins is determined by the market price of the gold content, the coins are also issued as legal tender with a corresponding, symbolic “face” value in four different denominations: $50, $25, $10, and $5, which apparently are far below the value of the coins as bullion. Despite the high probability that the price of the coins’ gold content will never fall below their face value, a least value for the coins as if in circulation is nonetheless guaranteed by the U.S. government.
American Eagle bullion gold coins have a gold purity level of 91.67 percent, as they use the durable 22-karat, historical standard for gold circulating coinage established 350 years ago. Although 99.9% fine gold purity is available on many other bullion coins, the small amount of alloy used in American Eagles does harden the coins to make them resist scratching and marring, which can diminish resale value.
The 1-ounce, $50-dollar American Buffalo bullion gold coins are the first 24-karat fine gold coins ever struck by the United States Mint. With a purity level of .9999, the coins are among the world’s purest gold coins in terms of the fineness of the gold they contain. The American Buffalo coins offers gold investors a new and rare opportunity to buy a 24-karat bullion gold coin.
American Eagles and American Buffalo gold coins are both distributed by the U.S. Mint to a network of wholesalers, brokerage companies, precious metal firms, coin dealers, and participating banks, known as Authorized Purchasers.
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