The Krugerrand is a very popular bullion coin minted in South Africa. First produced in 1967, it was the world’s first bullion gold coin. The Krugerrand is produced by the South African Mint through the Rand Refinery, in a number of weights including the one ounce (1 oz), half Krugerrand (1/2 oz), quarter Krugerrand (1/4 oz) and tenth Krugerrand (1/10 oz).
The price of a Krugerrand in the UK is at a premium slightly above the gold value of its weight due to its reputation. The Krugerrand is made of a gold-copper alloy, unlike most other gold coins. This, like the Gold Sovereign, was the old way of strengthening a coin and ensuring that as time passes it would be resistant to scratches and knocks. Modern coin minting has made the need for this combination unnecessary, but for tradition’s sake the Krugerrand is still produced in this distinct way.
To this day it is still the most popular investment bullion coin around the world. When it comes time to sell a Krugerrand you can rest assured that it will be met with interest and fetch a good price.
The Gold Standard was dropped in 1971, due to the flawed nature of the Bretton Woods system. For many countries owning gold privately was, or had been, considered a criminal offense, but as nations left this financial agreement, so the gold market opened up, and with 70% of the world’s gold being mined in South Africa, the Krugerrand was an opportunity to take advantage of the situation with the country’s natural resources.
The intent was to produce a coin that would appeal to investors and collectors alike, and the results spoke for themselves. By 1980 the Krugerrand accounted for 90% of the world’s gold coin trade - despite being banned in many countries due to South Africa’s apartheid. Many other countries saw the Krugerrand’s success and decided to issue their own bullion coins. The Canadian Maple, Australian Nugget, American Eagle and British Britannia were all created after the Krugerrand showed just how popular a collectable gold coin could be, rather than just gold as an investment.
The gold Krugerrand was named after Paul Kruger – the first President of the South African Republic – and the South African currency of the Rand. The Obverse features a profile of Paul Kruger designed by Otto Shultz and is surrounded by “SUID-AFRIKA : SOUTH AFRICA”. The Reverse of the coin depicts a Springbok; an antelope that is one of the national symbols of South Africa.
One troy ounce of gold weighs 31.10 grams but the Gold Krugerrand actually weighs 33.93 grams, with exactly one troy ounce of pure gold and the remaining 2.83 grams made of copper, giving the coin its distinctive orange tint and, at the time, greater durability than pure gold alone.
Please note: Gold Krugerrands are all made containing a small percent of copper, meaning that all Gold Krugerrand coins should have the distinct orange/copper colouring.
For the past two years, celebrating the coin’s fiftieth anniversary, the Rand Refinery has produced a one ounce silver Krugerrand. Made to the same design and high specifications as its golden counterpart, the silver Krugerrand (as a cheaper alternative) has seen great demand across the globe, continuing to reinforce the coins popularity.