About Perth Mint Bullion Blog

This blog discusses The Perth Mint's bullion coins and bars, providing information about our latest designs, mintages, sales volumes and sell outs. On a broader front, we share relevant research and opinions for anyone interested in gold and silver bullion investing.

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Monthly Sales – November 2016

Topics [ gold coins minted bars silver coins ]

Total ounces of gold and silver sold by The Perth Mint in November 2016 as coins and minted bars.

  - Gold (Au): 54,747 oz

  - Silver (Ag): 984,622 oz


This chart shows total monthly ounces of gold and silver shipped as minted products by The Perth Mint to wholesale and retail customers worldwide. It excludes sales of cast bars and other Group activities including sales of allocated/unallocated precious metal for storage by the Depository.

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What’s the difference between ‘bullion’ and ‘numismatic’ coins?

Topics [ gold coins bullion coins silver coins ]

There’s enormous thirst for knowledge about precious metal coins as more people consider whether or not investing in gold and/or silver is right for them.

Reflecting the number of new investors currently taking their first steps into the market, one of our most frequently asked questions is about the differences between ‘bullion’ and ‘numismatic’ coins.

It’s a great question that all ‘gold bugs’ will remember having to ask themselves while developing a passion for precious metals!

What is a numismatic coin?

It helps to characterise numismatic coins so as to appreciate the differences in the way bullion coins are manufactured and marketed.

A numismatist is someone who does more than simply collect coins. They actively study currency, including coins and paper money, or related items such as tokens and medals. Particularly, they’re interested in its historical, social and artistic significance.

Rightly or wrongly, the term numismatic has been adopted by many to describe modern commemorative non-circulating legal tender releases featuring design themes for collectors.

Produced by many of the same mints worldwide that offer bullion coins programs, numismatic issues exhibit exceptional finishes. Unlike circulating coinage, for example, they combine a highly polished (i.e. proof) table that is literally mirror-like, with superb clarity and definition of the raised, frosted elements (relief).

Proof coins were originally trial coins, hand-struck at the start of a mintage, in order that any flaws could be detected and rectified. Then they became a special sample kept as an example of each mintage. Today they are considered numismatic coins – of interest to collectors.

Including intricately coloured, gilded and antiqued coins, modern numismatic releases demonstrate the highly skilled art of the coinsmith. As well as being beautifully finished, they are also typified by a tightly restricted mintage, numbered certificate of authenticity, and decorative packaging.  

Motivation to acquire such coins is often complex. For many it is the strong desire to own something rare and intrinsically valuable with an aesthetically pleasing design that reflects a personal interest.

What is a bullion coin?

In contrast, a person’s interest in bullion coins is likely to be driven by different needs – namely, the desire to speculate in gold and silver; or, more shrewdly, to invest in precious metals over the long term as a store of wealth. Bullion coins can do this because they are valued on the basis of the weight of their precious metal.

Our recently-released 1oz Silver Kangaroo is a classic example of a bullion coin. Like the large majority of our numismatic coins, it is issued as Australian legal tender - its guarantee of weight and purity. However, it is mass-produced in unrestricted numbers with a more basic finish, and comes without display packaging or a certificate.

These factors represent the key to its attraction for investors. They allow the coin to be sold with a low mark-up or ‘premium’ - a small sum over the price of metal to cover the cost of fabrication, including the wages of those involved in design, production, quality control and so on.

As such, the price of a single Silver Kangaroo is only a few dollars above the international ‘spot’ market rate for silver – the benchmark price per ounce you see quoted on the nightly finance report. In short, it represents a cost-effective, trustworthy, and easily tradeable method of gaining exposure to the silver price.

(And with progressive reductions in the premium when buying these coins in quantities of 25, 100, 250 or 500 coins, the ability to invest in silver becomes even more affordable!)

With more than 10 million sold worldwide in less than 12 months, investors have taken a shine to the Australian Kangaroo 1oz silver bullion coin.

‘Semi-numismatic’ bullion coins

It won’t take long for anyone researching the differences between modern numismatic and bullion coins to see references to ‘semi-numismatic’ – a potentially confusing third category!

The Perth Mint is probably guilty of inspiring its origin when, back in 1987, it introduced the Australian Nugget gold coin featuring a far superior bullion finish to anything else available at the time. Essentially, this involved striking shiny relief elements on a frosted table – the reverse of how they appear on a proof coin.

Today, our gold Kangaroo, gold and silver Lunar, silver Kookaburra and silver Koala bullion coin series are all renowned for their ‘reverse proof’ finishes. Sold at spot plus premium, they’re highly sought-after by investors. Yet with annual design changes and, in some cases, a limited mintage, they are also favoured by collectors.

Sometimes called ‘reverse proofs’, high quality bullion coins from The Perth Mint use frosting on the coin table while the design areas are highly polished.

Thanks to their innovative combination of quality and value, these outstanding coins have occasionally provided canny investors with bonus returns. Like all precious metal coins they have a ‘buy back’ or ‘melt’ value which is aligned to the spot market. But thanks to strong collector demand for some of our semi-numismatic releases, secondary market values have been known to exceed the prevailing price of their metal.


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Monthly Sales – June 2016

Topics [ gold coins minted bars silver coins ]


Total ounces of gold and silver sold by The Perth Mint in June 2016 as coins and minted bars.

  - Gold (Au): 31,368 oz

  - Silver (Ag): 1,220,817 oz

This chart shows total monthly ounces of gold and silver shipped by the Minted Products division of The Perth Mint to wholesale and retail customers worldwide. It excludes sales of cast bars and other Group activities including sales of allocated/unallocated precious metal for storage by the Depository.

Stronger investor sentiment in June resulting from the UK’s Brexit vote helped reverse the decline in sales of Australia coins and bars evident over the past two months.

Up sharply to 31,368 ounces, sales of gold coins and minted bars were 49% ahead of the previous month.

Likewise, silver coin sales were higher, up 25% to 1,220,817 ounces - making June the ninth month out of the previous 10 in which sales have exceeded 1 million ounces.

Compared to the June 2015 figure of 384,586 ounces, silver sales during the latest month are up an extraordinary 217% which has been achieved with the help of the new Australian Kangaroo 1oz silver bullion coin launched by The Perth Mint in September.

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Monthly Sales – March 2016

Topics [ gold minted bars gold coins silver coins ]


Total ounces of gold and silver sold by The Perth Mint in March 2016 as coins and minted bars.

  - Gold (Au): 47,948 oz

  - Silver (Ag): 1,756,238 oz


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Monthly Sales - October 2015

Topics [ buy gold online buy silver online gold coins minted bars silver coins ]


Total ounces of gold and silver sold by The Perth Mint in October 2015 as coins and minted bars.

  - Gold (Au): 66,951oz

  - Silver (Ag): 1,751,898oz

Comment:  Neil Vance - Group Manager, Minted Products

“Perth Mint silver coin sales exploded in September on the back of the introduction of our 1oz Silver Kangaroo bullion coin which we manufactured early and stockpiled in readiness for launch. The market absorbed 100% of this stock within days of its release.

In October, our ability to supply silver coins returned to volumes dictated by standard weekly manufacturing capacity. As demand remained extremely strong, we had to allocate coins to clients worldwide.

October’s sales graph reflects the number of silver coins we were able to deliver given current capacity, rather than the actual demand we experienced."

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Bullion Buying: No ID Required For Telephone Orders Up To $5,000

Topics [ Australian Kangaroo gold coins silver bullion gold bullion Australian Koala silver coins Australian Kookaburra bullion bars ]


New customers buying physical gold and silver bullion to the value of AU$5,000 are no longer required to complete ID checks when ordering over the telephone.

Previously, all new customers wishing to buy bullion had to provide two certified identification documents as part of their customer registration process.

This condition no longer applies to phone buyers purchasing bullion coins and bars under the AU$5,000 limit. New buyers can now open an account and place their first order during the very same call!


Telephone buyers can continue to buy bullion as frequently as they wish so long as the value of their accumulated orders awaiting dispatch from the Mint does not exceed the maximum allowance.

According to Perth Mint Acting General Manager, Neil Vance, the new rules for telephone ordering will benefit many customers. “It will help small investors, particularly ‘mum-and-dad’ type buyers, who want to purchase one or two coins at a time with as little hassle as possible,” he said.

“Gift buyers too will appreciate the ability to pick up individual bullion coins from series like our Australian Lunar program, which is an extremely popular way of marking Chinese New Year and celebrating birthdays.”

The Perth Mint’s full range of internationally renowned bullion coins and cast and minted bars can be viewed on www.perthmintbullion.com. To open an account and order, just call 1300 201 112 from Australia or +61 8 9421 7218 from overseas.

For orders in excess of AU$5,000, customers must satisfy full ID requirements under the Australian Government’s Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006.

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