Is Bullion Ever Collectible?

Everyone likes to have silver or gold in their portfolio, but 99 percent of bullion coins are just that — bullion only — and worth only the gold value. At any given time, it can be worth from 5 percent under to 6 percent over gold value. These bullion gold coins are minted and sold by most countries. South Africa has KrugerrandsChina has pandas and Austria, Mexico, Canada and other countries mint 1-ounce coins from their reserves and sell to investors who believe gold pricing is going up. Now that gold value has been declining since 2008, many are disposing of these underperforming assets and using the money for stock market investing or to fund vacations.

1982 Valuable 1oz. Panda Coins

Today, we will discuss some of the sleeper dates on these coins. In this industry, “sleeper” is defined as value that most people don’t think is value. For instance, most 1-ounce panda coins are worth their gold value, which at the time of this writing is around $1,280. However, there are certain key dates that bring considerably more than the gold value — which is a little secret most dealers don’t share.

The Chinese panda began in 1982, and in the late 1990s these coins were plentiful. In times of crisis and high gold value, many were melted — as a result, low-mintage years like 1997 and 1998 experienced a bump in value.

panda coin
chinese panda coin


These two years, along with the date of origin (1982) often bring significantly more than just bullion value. A 1982 1-ounce panda typically sells for double the gold value — and extremely high grades can bring even more. Even a half-ounce from 1982 will often bring $1,000 to $1,500. A 1997 1-ounce panda in good condition will go for $100 to $500 over gold value. A 1998 1-ounce panda, depending on variety, can go to $200 over gold value or as much as double the gold value. Please note that damaged or worn coins, even if a good date, are only worth their gold value.

bullion coin


This is an archival article formerly written and is for informational purposes only. The valuations in this article have likely changed since it was first written.

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