The new designs for US American Eagle platinum proof bullion coins of 2015-16 were released in October 2014. Personally I’m more in favour of the eagle than I am of Miss Liberty – (who has a figure like that naturally?)
The question then was posed whether these are real coins to spend or just for collectors with a nominal value on them. The latter is the truth of the argument as regards bullion coins. The face value is way lower than the metal value.
US Eagle proof and standard platinum coins are made in four denominations: $100 coin contains an ounce of pure platinum while the fractions (half ounce, quarter ounce and 1/10th ounce) are denominated as $50,$25 and $10 dollars respectively. Since 1997 the proof coins have had different reverses to the standard types.
On the other hand, the American Buffalo gold bullion coins series (24ct, 0.9999 fine) have a one ounce with a $50 face value, half-ounce $25 face value, quarter-ounce $10 and 1/10th ounce face value $5. The difference in denominations between the Eagles and Buffalos reflect the higher price of platinum on the commodities market. However, the gap in price between platinum and gold has shrunk as gold surged in price over the last few years. Again the gold coins are produced in Proof and standard Uncirculated, both individually and in sets.
Both series are firmly linked to the commodities market and prices fluctuate not just weekly but daily and more, so the value of the coins is very volatile but still loved as part of a larger portfolio of stocks and shares, especially in USA.
Do we deal in these new bullion issues? No – we are rather old-fashioned numismatists and without a traditional brick-built store it’s not practical for us to deal in bullion, although we have the knowledge to do so on the secondary market and Howard first became a professional dealer during the 1979-1980 gold boom and bust.
* American Eagle/Liberty photos all from CoinsNews.net
** American Buffalo photos from US Mint