Gold Krugerrand Coins
|Weight||1.0909 troy oz (33.93 g)|
|Composition||99.67% Au, 8.33% Cu|
|Minting Years||1967 – present|
Gold Krugerrand coins are produced by the South African Mint and were first minted in South Africa in 1967 to help market South African gold. By 1980, the Krugerrand accounted for 90% of the global gold coin market. The name, Krugerrand, is a compound of “Kruger” (Paul Kruger) and “rand”, the South African unit of currency.
The production levels of Krugerrands have varied significantly during the last 50 years. From 1967–1969, around 40,000 coins were minted each year. In 1970, the amount rose to over 200,000 coins. Over one million coins were produced in 1974 and in 1978 a total of six million Krugerrands were produced. Following the end of apartheid, Krugerrand production dropped to 23,277 coins in 1998 and since then levels have increased again, although they have not reached the pre-international sanction levels.
The Krugerrand was introduced in 1967 as a vehicle for private ownership of gold. Unusual for bullion coins, the Krugerrand was given the status of legal tender. Therefore, it was minted with a more durable copper-gold alloy. Despite the coin’s legal tender status, economic sanctions against South Africa, for its policy of apartheid, made the Krugerrand an illegal import in many Western countries during the 1970s and 1980s. These sanctions ended when South Africa abandoned apartheid in 1994.
By 1980, the Krugerrand accounted for 90% of the global gold-coin market. Also in 1980, the South African Mint introduced three smaller gold coins: half ounce, quarter ounce, and one-tenth ounce.
Gold Krugerrand Coin Variations
During the 1970s, the gold Krugerrand quickly became the number one choice for gold investors worldwide. Between 1974 and 1985, an estimated 22 million gold Krugerrand coins were imported into the United States alone.
The Krugerrand is 32.77 mm in diameter and 2.84 mm thick. The Krugerrand’s actual weight is 1.0909 troy ounces (33.93 g). It is minted from gold alloy that is 91.67% pure (22 karats), so the coin contains one troy ounce (31.1035 g) of gold. The remaining 8.33% of the coin’s weight (2.826 g) is copper (an alloy known historically as crown gold, which has long been used for English gold sovereigns). The alloy gives the Krugerrand a more orange appearance than silver-alloyed gold coins. Copper alloy coins are harder and more durable, so they can resist scratches and dents.
The front side (obverse) of the Krugerrand coin was designed by Otto Schultz, and depicts the face of Boer statesman Paul Kruger, four-term president of the old South African Republic. The reverse side of the coin was designed by Coert Steynberg and depicts a springbok, one of the national symbols of South Africa. The springbok was previously used on the reverse of the earlier South African five-shilling coins. The name “South Africa” and the gold content are inscribed in both Afrikaans and English (as can be seen on the pictures of the coin).
|1 oz||32.77||2.84||33.930||22 karat 91.67%||31.103||1.000||160**|
|1/2 oz||27.07||2.215||16.965||22 karat 91.67%||15.552||0.500||185|
|1/4 oz||22.06||1.888||8.482||22 karat 91.67%||7.776||0.250||150|
|1/10 oz||16.55||1.35||3.393||22 karat 91.67%||3.110||0.100||115|
|* Maximum dimensions|
The South African Mint Company produces limited-edition proof Krugerrands intended to be collectors’ items rather than bullion investments. We call these “numismatic” coins. Numismatic coins are usually priced much higher than bullion coins. Numismatic Krugerrands can be distinguished from the bullion Krugerrands by the number of serrations on the edge of the coin. Proof coins have 220 serrations, while bullion coins have 160.
Depositing Krugerrands in Salvation Army donation kettles has become an annual tradition of one or more anonymous benefactors in several cities around the United States, including Daphne, AL, Atlanta, GA, Seattle, WA, Spokane, WA, Fargo, ND, Bay City, MI, St. Clair Shores, MI, Kokomo, IN, and Tulsa, OK.