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The first Britannia Coin was struck in gold in 1987 with its silver coin cousin being minted a decade later in 1997. The initial gold coin was created in response to the declining popularity of the Royal Mint’s bullion coin, the Sovereign.
The Sovereign had been a popular choice for investors in bullion gold since it was first minted in the 19th century. The iconic coin had held substantial status in the domestic, European and international markets as a coin of high quality with good provenance. However, the introduction of the South African Krugerrand in 1967 proved to be bad news for the Royal Mint. Cast using exactly 1 oz of gold, the Krugerrand was instantly a preferred choice of bullion coin and by 1980 was dominating the investment markets, making up almost 90% of all bullion coins.
Though it took the Royal Mint a further seven years to respond to its change of fortunes, the Gold Britannia was worth waiting for. Drawing on the national brand and opting for a figure of the quintessentially British Britannia, the coin was also struck using 1 oz of gold. However, the initial design featured just 22-carat gold. This was updated in 2013, since then the Gold Britannia has been struck with 24-carat gold.
The Britannia design has changed during the course of the coin’s 30-year history and has featured her in the classic seated pose, standing, against a backdrop of waves, with chariot and, in 2001, she was even replaced by Una and the Lion. A powerful, female personification of the United Kingdom, Britannia coins appeal to both the domestic markets as well as to international investors, the Asian markets particularly.
Gold Britania Coins have the status of being Capital Gains tax-free. For this reason, they are increasingly popular as investments for business owners seeking to secure their company profits over a short to medium term. Individual investors are also guaranteed to be able to keep 100% of any profits made on top of the resale value of these special tax status bullion coins.
The Britannia gold coin has a face value of £100 and weighs one troy ounce. However, the gold Britannia is also available in fractional sizes with face values of £50, £25 and £10 weighing one half, one quarter and one-tenth of a troy ounce respectively. The Silver Britannia coin has a face value of £2 and is available in the same fractional denominations as its gold cousin with face values of £1, 50p and 20p respectively.
2017 marks an important anniversary for the Britannia with the gold version celebrating thirty years of mintage and the silver version, twenty years. As a result, the Royal Mint has created several collectors editions of the coin including presentation case proof versions. Collectors editions of Britannia coins come with a buyer’s premium that are often unable to be realised on resale of your gold and silver. They do not make the best investment coins and those individuals looking to get the best value for their investments should look at bullion versions of Britannia coins. We can offer discounts on larger volumes, passing economies of scale directly on to our customers.
Bullion coins offer an ideal way for investors to build a precious metals holding and, because of their tax-free status, Britannia coins provide a cost-effective way to buy. Whilst silver offers a lower buy-in price point and the potential for greater returns, the higher price of gold is an attractive investment solution for many traditional commodities investors. Most investors choose to invest in gold and silver as an alternative, or supplementary, investment to paper assets and enjoy the benefits that physical gold and silver offer when stocks and shares suffer from the volatility of an economic downturn. Though silver and gold bars offer better value for money when it comes to negating the higher production costs of coins, bullion coins offer greater flexibility when it comes to divisibility and investors can liquidate part of their portfolio more easily. A balance of bullion coins and bars mixed with some rare and collectable coins can provide greater long-term security and allow investors to take advantage of price changes in the price of gold and silver.