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South African Krugerrands

South African Krugerrands

The Krugerrand is a gold coin from South Africa, first minted in 1967 to help market South African gold. It is produced by the South African Mint.

By 1980 the Krugerrand accounted for 90% of the global gold coin...


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Quick Facts About South African Krugerrands

While mintage varies from year to year, since 1967, more than 50 million South African Gold Krugerrand coins have been minted. The gold Krugerrand quickly became the number one choice for investors worldwide during the bull gold market in the 1970's. Between 1974-1985 it is estimated that 22 million gold Krugerrand coins were imported into the United States.

The success of the South African Gold Krugerrand inspired other gold-producing countries to mint and issue gold bullion coins. Including Canada, with the gold Canadian Maple Leaf; China, with the Chinese Gold Panda; the United States, with the American Gold Eagle; and the United Kingdom, with the British Gold Britannia.

The dimensions of the 1 oz South African Gold Krugerrand is 32.77 mm in diameter and 2.84 mm thick. It is minted from a gold alloy that is 91.67% pure (22 karats) so that the coin contains one troy ounce (31.1035 grams) of gold. The remaining 8.33% of the of the coins weight is copper which gives the Krugerrand it's orange appearance. As a result, the Krugerrand's actual weight is 1.0909 troy ounces (33.93 grams).

In 1980, the South African Mint began producing gold Krugerrand coins in fractional ounce sizes, containing 1/2 oz (15.5 grams), 1/4 ounce (7.78 grams), and 1/10 ounce (3.11 grams) of pure gold.

South African Krugerrands History & Facts

  • Introduced in 1967
  • First gold coin minted specifically for investors
  • Minted from 21k gold, 91.67% pure with 8.33% copper for durability and strength.
  • More than 50 million ounces of gold Krugerrands have been sold to date
  • Krugerrands are minted from both silver and gold

The Krugerrand was introduced in 1967 as the first gold coin intended for private investment. The coin is minted of an alloy blended from 91.67% gold and 8.33% copper.

Throughout the 1970's the 1 oz Gold Krugerrand dominated the international precious metals markets worldwide, commanding at 90% share of the global coin market.

The success of South Africa in becoming the primary vehicle for precious metals investors led other countries to begin minting gold coins.

The apartheid policies of the government in South Africa brought about economic sanctions and the import of Krugerrand gold coins was banned from 1985 until 1991.

When shopping for gold coins investors are frequently looking for government minted bullion because of the guaranteed purity and weight. Secondary market 1 oz Krugerrands have one of the lowest premiums of government minted gold coins.

It's estimated that more than 22 million gold Krugerrands were imported prior to 1985.

The Krugerrand has no face value. Though it is recognized as a legal tender coin under the South African Reserve Bank Act.

Variations and Denominations

Up until 1980, the South African Mint produced only the 1 oz weight variation. Fractional Krugerrands were introduced in three additional weights, containing 1/2, 1/4 and 1/10 troy ounce of gold.

Fractional coins are produced annually along with the one troy ounce. In some years only proof versions of the coins have been minted.

Due to the large amount of coins imported during the 1970s and 1980s it is very common to find coins from these years among secondary market and random year coins.

Coin Finishes

Krugerrands are available in both proof and bullion finishes.

Krugerrand Gold Proofs are relatively scarce and highly sought after by collectors. The demand for Proof Krugerrands is strong and numismatic investors have seen impressive returns when timing the market.

Silver Krugerrands

In 2017, the Krugerrand 1 oz Silver Coin was introduced with a Premium Uncirculated finish.

The introduction was highly received by both investors and collectors and quickly sold out the entire mintage of 1,000,000 coins.

For Krugerrand collectors, the 2017 Krugerrand Silver 1 oz Proof coins is highly desirable, with a limited mintage of only 10,000 coins.

Silver Krugerrands share the design of the original. The obverse has a portrait of Paul Kruger, the former President and of South Africa who was highly regarded.

The reverse displays the springbok, an antelope-like animal that is native to South Africa and is recognized as a national symbol.