Among collectors, the South African Krugerrand is a very popular gold bullion coin. This coin was first minted by the South African Mint in 1967. The name is derived from “Kruger” (the name of the man, Paul Kruger, who is depicted on the obverse) and “rand” which is the South African unit of currency.
History of the coin
The South African Krugerrand Coin was introduced as a vehicle for personal, private ownership of gold. It was given the status of legal tender and was minted in a more durable copper-gold alloy. Due to South Africa’s policy of apartheid, the coin was made an illegal import in many Western countries during the 1970’s and 1980’s even though it was a legal form of currency. When South Africa ended apartheid in 1994, these sanctions were lifted and the South African Krugerrand Coin could be imported in the West. Since 1980, the Krugerrand has held a large portion of the gold market.
The one ounce South African Krugerrand is 32.77 mm in diameter and 2.84 mm thick. The actual weight is 1.0909 troy ounces (33.93 g). The gold it is minted from is 91.67% pure, making the coin contain one troy ounce (31.1035) of gold. The remaining 8.33% of the coin’s weight is copper. This gives the coin a more orange look than other silver-alloyed coins. Adding the copper makes the coin more durable in several ways; they are harder, resist scratches, and resist dents. In addition to the one ounce Krugerrand, there is also a half ounce, a quarter ounce, and a tenth ounce denomination.
A Krugerrand is known by its details. The face of the coin is that of Paul Kruger, who was a four-term president of the South African Republic. One of the national symbols of South Africa, the springbok, is shown on the opposite side of the coin. “South Africa” and the gold content are both inscribed on the coin, in Afrikaans and English.
Value and Pricing of the coin
In current 2013 markets, the South African Krugerrand bullion is valued around $1740.00, which is an above gold bullion premium. There are also minted, by the South African Mint Company, limited edition proof Krugerrand that are nice collector’s items. The proof coins are priced above bullion value. You can distinguish between proof and bullion by the number of cuts, or serrations, on the edge of the coin. Proof coins have 220 cuts and the bullion coins have 160 cuts.