Gold franc coins are deeply intertwined with the history of 19th century France and other major parts of Europe. During the French colonial period, the gold franc emerged as a major international currency. Millions of franc gold coins were minted by countries of the Latin Monetary Union (LMU) throughout the last half of the 19th and early 20th centuries prior to abandoning the gold standard.
The Latin Monetary Union was a treaty between many European nations to unify under a common gold-standard currency that was derived from the French Gold Franc. It was the historic predecessor of the Euro currency that ended around the outbreak of World War I.
These historic gold coins have survived more than 150 years and continue to be an excellent store of value. Each 20 Francs gold coin was minted according to the exact standards described in the treaty.
These are one of the most popular investment gold bullion coins, preppers, collectors and stackers who see fractional gold as a store of wealth.
The most widely available and most popular is the 20 Francs Gold Coin and have an overall nominal weight of 6.45 grams with a diameter of 21mm. The alloy adds a small amount of copper to provide strength and rigidity that allowed the coins to endure circulation. Most secondary market and random year 20 francs coins will be the lowest premium. The condition will vary, but most will show signs of circulation that typically include surface scratches and dirt and bag marks from use in commerce.
Gold coins meeting these specifications were produced by countries throughout Europe. Variations of the Gold 20 Franc included the Swiss 20 Franc, Belgian 20 Franc, Spanish 20 Peseta, Greek 20 drachma, Austria 8 florins, Hungarian 8 forint and the Italian 20 lira.All of these coins have the same physical characteristics and make an excellent store of value and wealth.
Napoleon III 20 Francs Gold Coin Highlights:
Napoleon III (1808-1873) was the nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte and Emperor of France from 1852 to 1870. His leadership was undermined by a sequence of political mishaps, including rifts with the Vatican and the French business community.
In the War of 1870, he met defeat by the Prussians due to their superior military tactics combined with political disunity throughout France. Within days of being defeated in the War of 1870, Napoleon III was unseated and he fled to live his remaining days in exile from his homeland.
There are two versions of this coin commonly found amongst the bullion market. One variation shows Napoleon wearing a Laureate wreath on his head, the second shows him without the Laureate. Both coins were minted in large numbers and widely circulated.
"Lucky Angel" 20 Francs Gold Coin Highlights:
The French Angel Gold Coin, minted from 1871 to 1898, is one of the most actively pursued by investors and collectors. Commonly referred to as the "Lucky Angel", originally designed by Augustin Dupre in the late 18th century, the design was resurrected in 1871.
The French Rooster gold coins were struck by the Paris mint from 1899 until 1914. The obverse contains a bust portrait of Marianne France, a female personification of the values represented by the French Republic: Liberty, Equality, Fraternity.20 Francs Gold Rooster Details:
Swiss Helvetia 20 Francs Gold Coin Highlights:
Switzerland is best known for its commercial banking facilities that garner the privacy of investors. The concept of modern banking is said to have originated with the Swiss, who are believed to be descendant from the Templar Knights who were exiled from France during the 14th century. They are also known for having some of the most well known private mints in the world.
The Swiss Helvetia 20 Francs is referred to informally as the 'Vreneli', which derived from 'Verena', that is Switzerland's equivalent to Lady Liberty.
The coin depicts Vreneli on the obverse with the word 'Helvetia' written above her hair. On the reverse is an image of the Swiss Cross surrounded by a shield.
They have become one the most popular fractional gold coins on the market because they have significantly lower premiums than newly minted gold coins. Being of similar dimensions to the quarter coin makes it easy to store these coins in the same tubes that are used for storing junk silver.
For investors, buying Random Year 20 Franc is the most logical choice for those looking for the lowest premium on fractional gold coins. They are highly sought after because they are at a price point that is affordable many.
Oftentimes dealers will have inventory of coins from a specified country and maybe a range of dates. These coins are often sold to collectors at higher premiums. Random Year 20 francs gold coin have a lower premium over spot price than when you choose one from a specific country. Today's monetary worth of a 20 franc gold coin is primarily based on the intrinsic gold value.
Other denominations of the Gold Franc were minted and circulated; including the 5 Francs, 10 Franc Gold Coin, 40 Franc Gold Coin and 100 Franc Gold Coin.
The 20 Francs Gold Coin continues to be one of the most popular fractional gold coin amongst investors, preppers and stackers primarily because of the underlying intrinsic value of the gold. These circulated gold coins are a very popular way to store wealth while taking up very little storage space.
Napoleon I of France re-introduced the gold franc in 1803. The franc standard included six denominations of gold coins; 5, 10 francs, 20 francs, 40, 50 and 100 Francs. Each was struck from planchets minted of .900 fine gold.
Use of the French franc was far and wide across Europe following the Napoleonic Wars. Some of the 20 Francs coins from the early 1800s were struck at mints in Italy and the Netherlands all bearing the French Franc currency. During the 1860s, European leaders began to recognize the importance of having mutually agreed upon standards for international trade.
The Latin Monetary Union (LMU) was codified in a treaty agreement between France, Belgium, Italy and Switzerland in 1865. The leading purpose of the was the provide a way to facilitate international trade in a standard way on a bimetalism standard. The standard used coins minted from gold for larger denominations with smaller denomination coins minted of silver.
In the years that followed, additional countries joined the treated and their mints' began producing coins that adhered to the treaty standards. These standards allowed member countries to continue minting and circulating their own currency while still be able to participate in international trade with other member nations using a fixed gold-to-silver ratio.
The initial gold-to-silver ratio was established of 15.5 to 1. This meant that a single LMU Franc unit was represented by 4.5 grams of fine silver or .290322 grams of fine gold. Beginning in 1873, the LMU moved away from the bimetalism standard and eliminated the use of silver. The gold standard was continued with a fixed value of 1 franc = 0.290322581 grams of gold.
These coins were legal tender at the time they were minted. These unique fractional gold coins offer just a glimpse into the history of where these coins may have circulated. The financial hardships in Europe that followed World War I eventually led to the breakup and the Union was officially disbanded in 1927. Coins like these are readily identifiable and simple to verify from various coin books and references, both online and offline. Although these coin are sold as bullion for the intrinsic value of their gold composition, some may also have numismatic to collectors.
Gold Francs afford the opportunity to buy historic gold coins that are worth considerably more now than when they were minted. All of the franc denominated gold coins are minted with 90% pure gold. Having even a small stack of gold francs can provide a significant amount of financial security.The standards defined by the Latin Monetary Union were based on specifications introduced by Napoleon I in 1803. Each gold franc was to be struck from a planchet of .900 fine gold with denominations of 5, 10, 20, 40, 50 and 100 Francs. The remaining 10% of the alloy was designated as 10% copper.
The 5 Francs Gold Coins are the smallest denomination with each piece offering .0471 troy ounces of fine gold. Mostly popular amongst collectors, these coin are less common than other denominations and many examples can carry a significant numismatic premium over melt value that has less appeal to investors. The 5 francs coin was minted in two sizes, each containing the same amount of gold. Some 5 francs coins are 14.4mm, others are 16.7mm in diameter. The gross weight of each is 1.629 grams.
The 10 Francs Gold Coins have grown in popularity with investors as they occasionally pop up in secondary markets like eBay with a low premium over melt value. Some are appreciated for their numismatic value, though many are attractive for stacking.Each 10 Francs coin has a gross weight of 3.2258 grams and contains .0933 troy ounces of gold. The diameter of the coin is 19mm and .8mm thick.
The 20 Franc Gold Coin is the most popular denomination for investors in this coin series. Random Year Gold 20 Francs coins are highly sought after by a variety of investor types. Basically, anyone looking to buy fractional gold to own as an asset. Regardless of the country of origin, each 20 Francs is minted to the same specifications and contains .1867 troy ounces of gold. Each 20 Francs gold coin is steeped in history and is 21 mm in diameter, with a total weight of 6.45 grams, of which, 5.806 grams is pure gold. The remaining .644 grams being copper to provide strength and durability for the coins to survive circulation.
With such a large number of countries participating in the LMU, many different designs of 20 Francs Gold Coin are available today to investors. As these are circulated coins that offer little numismatic value, these coins are perfect to hoard as a store of wealth.
The 40 Francs Gold Coin, like many of the larger denominations are less commonly found as bullion items. Fewer of these coins were minted, which has giving them some scarcity and rarity. While these coins are extremely popular amongst collectors, some investors have been able to leverage coin auctions to improve the return on investment of some graded specimens. The 40 francs gold coin was minted from 1854 to 1889. The coin is 26mm in diameter and has a gross weight of 12.9 grams.
The 50 Francs Gold Coins was first struck in 1852 and are a significant piece of numismatic history that are highly sought after by collectors of fine gold coins. These coins are less common than other denominations and many examples can enjoy a generous numismatic premium over the gold melt price. The earlier mintage years contain mint marks from three distinct location that include: Paris, Lyon and Nancy. Production from all three mint locations was ongoing through 1928. Although production was discontinued in 1928, recent auction prices show that 50 francs gold coins are still very much in demand with collectors. The 50 francs gold coin has a gross weight of 16.129 grams and contains .4667 troy ounces of gold. These coins are 28mm in diameter and 1.8mm thick.
The 100 Francs Gold Coin is the largest size in the series and are a key specie that collectors love. These coins denominations are less common than others and many examples can carry a large numismatic premium based on condition and rarity. Similar in size to U.S. $20 double eagles gold coin, the first 100 franc gold coin was minted by France in 1801. A second minting was issued again in 1848. The denomination was reestablished in 1967 for commemorative coins. The gross weight of each coin is 32.2581 grams with approximately .9334 troy ounces of gold. The diameter is 35mm and these coins are 2.3mm thick.
Vintage gold coins have a rich history and many investors are attracted to these coins as tangible assets. When buying Gold Francs as a store of value, FindBullionPrices.com can help you find the lowest premiums from an assortment of trusted and reputable online bullion dealers. The prices on our site are updated every hour and adjusted for gold spot price. This gives you the tools to compare gold prices.