Brief history of, and information about, Chinese gold pandas.
One Ounce of Gold
Many countries now issue a one ounce bullion coin, to be sold at a very low premium over the intrinsic gold value. The Chinese version is the Panda.
Unlike krugerrands, Britannias, and US gold eagles, the Chinese pandas are made of "fine" gold (99.9% pure) instead of 22 carat (91.66%). This appears to have added to their popularity,
In addition to the usual one troy ounce size, there are four fractional weights going down to 1/20th of an ounce.
Krugerrands versus Pandas
Because krugerrands were the first one ounce gold bullion coins to be issued, it is worth comparing gold pandas with krugers.
Krugerrands were first issued in 1967, as one ounce bullion coins. From 1980, they were also produced in fractional sizes of half ounce, quarter ounce, and tenth ounce. Pandas were introduced in 1982. The premium charged on pandas by the Chinese mint is higher than that charged for krugerrands or most other gold bullion coins. Although this may make them slightly less attractive to investors interested purely in their gold content, it does not appear to have deterred collectors.
Gold pandas were extremely successful when they were first introduced, we have heard reports of the 1982 coins selling at over $3,000 US or over £2,000; this panda mania continued for several years, peaking about 1987, since then issue quantities have dropped and many dates are not easy to find.
The Panda Family
Almost every year the reverse design of the panda is changed, which makes the panda series more interesting to collectors. Pandas are regularly produced in five sizes from one ounce to a twentieth ounce, although in some years much larger sizes have been issued, sometimes in very limited quantities.
Pandas - New Designs
The obverse design shows the Temple of Heaven in Beijing.
The reverse designs of Chinese gold pandas are changed almost every year as mentioned above.
Low Premium Over Gold Content
As with most one ounce gold bullion coins, they are made available to world bullion dealers at a relatively low premium over gold content, even though this is higher for pandas than for most other bullion coin issues.
Higher Premium on Smaller Sizes
The fractional sizes were issued at higher premiums than the one ounce versions. The fractional coins have never been as popular as the full one ounce coins, usually only being purchased as singles, although they are often used in jewellery.
VAT Free From January 2000
In Britain investment gold coins, including Chinese gold pandas became VAT free from January 1st 2000.
Continuous Service from Chard
Chard have maintained a dealing service for both collectors and investors in bullion and numismatic coins since 1964.
The following table summarises the specifications of all the sizes.
Sorry, but eBay do not allow html code, so this table is not as neatly formatted as it is on our website.
Size Value Diameter Weight Fineness Gold Content Gold Content
One Ounce 100 Yuan 32.103 31.1036 .999 31.103 1.0000
Half 50 Yuan 27.00 15.5517 .999 15.55 0.5000
Quarter 25 Yuan 21.95 7.7758 .999 7.77 0.2500
Tenth 10 Yuan 17.95 3.1103 .999 3.110 0.1000
Twentieth 5 Yuan 13.92 1.5552 .999 1.55 0.0500
Complete Set 190 Yuan N/A 59.1548 .999 59.083 1.9000
Author & Copyright Notice
Any images shown are our own copyright images. Our text and description is also copyright, Lawrence Chard of Chard Coins.
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