You may be asking yourself, should I buy silver coins or silver rounds? Unlike bars, coins and rounds can be easy to confuse, especially for a beginner. In this article I will discuss the simple yet important differences between coins and rounds.
Gold and Silver Coins
Coin collecting is a favorite among investors and for a good reason. There are so many great gold and silver coin designs available from multiple well known mints.
Gold and silver coins have legal tender and will always hold their face value. Some coins have a unique design each year making them great for collecting. They usually cost more than the spot price due to this.
Typical sizes of coins are 1 oz., ½ oz., ¼ oz., and 1/10 oz. (with some exceptions). The dimensions can vary from one design to another, so you only stack coins of the same design.
Each coin has an obverse (front of coin) and reverse (back of coin). All coins display the weight, purity, face value and year somewhere on them.
Benefits of Coins
Legal tender (although the value of the metal isn’t likely to go below this, the coin will always hold the face value)
Can be easier to use in trade and barter
Can buy silver under spot price when you opt for junk silver
Drawbacks of Coins
You pay more for the “collect-ability” factor
New uncirculated coins sell higher than spot price compared to rounds
Can be hard to stack and store unless purchasing the same design
- 1 oz. Canadian Gold Maple Leaf
- 1 oz. Gold Chinese Panda
- 1 oz. American Silver Eagle
Rounds are a great way to buy gold and silver online. Rounds are essentially round discs of metal with a nice design stamped into them. They are similar to buying gold or silver bars. Rounds are more widely available than coins and carry a very low premium over spot price, making them a great way to start investing.
Rounds can be produced by either government or private mints since they are not considered legal tender. They usually have the mint logo or name stamped on them, although not always. Unlike coins, rounds don’t have the year on them as they don’t differ from year-to-year.
Typical sizes of gold or silver rounds are 5 oz., 1 oz., ½ oz., ¼ oz. and 1/10 oz. Most mints keep similar dimensions for all their rounds so you can stack rounds of different designs as long as they are from the same mint.
Benefits of Rounds
Can stack rounds from the same mint (making them easier to store or transport)
Get more for your money (they carry the lowest premium over spot price compared to coins)
Drawbacks of Rounds
No collectible value (don’t change from year to year and are widely available)
Not ideal for trade or barter (not always as easily recognized)
No face value
- 1 oz. Sunshine Mint Silver Rounds
- 1 oz. American Buffalo Silver Rounds
Both coins and rounds have their advantages and disadvantages so that is why it’s important to have a wide variety of physical forms of precious metals depending on your needs and reasons for investing!
Disclaimer: Midwest Bullion Exchange, Inc. is a precious metals broker/dealer and is not a licensed investment adviser. Although we strongly advocate programs that allow you to hold precious metals in your retirement, we cannot predict the future performance of precious metals or programs that allow precious metals. Furthermore, we recommend that you consult with a professional tax adviser when making decisions that carry tax liabilities. Midwest Bullion Exchange, Inc. reserves the right to decline services to individuals after it has been determined the products and services offered by Midwest Bullion Exchange, Inc. are not suitable for the individual. The author has made every effort to ensure accuracy of information provided; however, neither Midwest Bullion Exchange, Inc., nor the author can guarantee complete accuracy. This article is for informational purposes only. Midwest Bullion Exchange, Inc. and the author of this article do not accept any fault for losses and/or damages arising from the use of this publication.