The 5 Best Gold Bullion Coins for Global Citizens

Written by Andrew Henderson

Buying gold bullion is a good way to diversify your assets out of fiat currencies. However, your home country’s world view may be putting your gold investments at risk. American gold buyers, in particular, may be taking an overly regional approach to buying gold bullion that could prove detrimental.

So don’t buy gold American Eagles until you read this.

At Nomad Capitalist, we discuss buying gold as a way to internationalize your assets. While we do advocate diversification (Gerald Celente once told me to buy gold and “keep it in a coffee can in your mother-in-law’s basement”), that gold diversification should in our opinion include gold bullion stored offshore, either in a private vault or with a trusted broker.

The 5 Best gold bullion coins for internationalization

American Gold Eagle

Gold American Eagles are popular among gold buyers in the United States, but they are much less widely accepted in gold-hungry markets like Europe and Asia

5. US American Eagle

While US Gold Eagles are popular in the United States, they are not so common overseas. For example, they can be nearly impossible to find in Hong Kong and Singapore, two of the world’s largest gold markets.

In Europe’s gold havens of Switzerland and Austria, the Austrian Philharmonic is preferred to US gold bullion.

The US American Eagle gold piece is 22-karat gold like a Krugerrand; the other bullion coins on this list are 24-karat and thus smaller.

While US American Eagles are easy to buy and store domestically, they are less in favor among gold-hungry investors in places like China, India, Vietnam, and elsewhere.

South African Krugerrand

South African Krugerrands are 22-karat gold bullion coins and a favorite among international gold investors

4. South American Krugerrand

The Krugerrand was the original bullion coin, and while it has had a colorful history, it remains a popular choice for gold investors today. First minted nearly fifty years ago in an effort to market abundant South African gold, the bullion coins are .9167 gold – the same as US Gold Eagles – and have a total weight of about 1.1 ounces.

It was the Krugerrand that took the idea of gold coins as legal tender to the mainstream. Today, there are more ounces of gold bullion coins held in Krugerrand than all other gold coins internationally.

Australian Gold Nugget

Australian Gold Nuggets, commonly called Australian Kangaroos, is a top gold coin for internationalization

3. Australian Kangaroo

Australia’s proximity to Asia has made their gold coins a top choice for Asian investors who don’t trust coins like the gold Chinese Pandas.

Known as Australian Gold Nuggets, they are one of only a few gold bullion coins to change their design each year. Australian Kangaroos are .9999 gold, and the coins were featured in international news in 2011 when the Perth Mint created the world’s first one-ton gold coin.

Austrian gold Philharmonic

Gold Austrian Philharmonics are beautiful bullion coins, but they are also among the most international gold coins available in the world

2. Austrian Philharmonic

Austrian Philharmonics are beautiful bullion coins, both in gold and silver. And while Philharmonics haven’t caught on as much in Asia, they are widely accepted through Europe and the Americas. It’s easy to buy Philharmonics in Central Europe and then store them in a place like Das Safe in Vienna right around the corner.

Premiums on Philharmonics are often in line with those on Maple Leafs. While Philharmonics are widely available from national dealers in the United States, they are less popular than Gold Eagles and Maple Leafs, which makes them one of the best bullion coins for internationalization due to their contrarian status in the insulated US market.

Canadian Maple Leaf gold coins

Canadian Maple Leaf gold coins are, in our opinion, the best way to internationalize your bullion holdings. They are easy to trade in many markets around the world and offer relatively low premiums.

1. Canadian Maple Leaf

The Maple Leaf is truly the “gold standard” among the best gold bullion coins. Canadian Maples are traded as one of the few one-ounce, mint-issued gold coins in places like Hong Kong. Maple Leafs were introduced twenty-five years ago as the second minted bullion coin, at a time when the South African Krugerrand was difficult to find due to the apartheid.

That head start may have had a big impact, as Maple Leafs are widely accepted as the most international gold bullion coin. As one of the purest gold regular-issue bullion coins, Maple Leafs have a gold content of .9999. The Royal Canadian Mint is more internationally respected than the US Mint, which makes Maple Leafs a great addition to your portfolio.

Of course, this list of best bullion coins is the opinion of the author. However, thinking internationally rather than just domestically can greatly improve your ability to preserve your wealth, including your gold investments.

If you want to internationalize your gold and bullion holdings, BullionStar in Singapore now offers two years of free storage on gold and silver purchased from them. Premiums are a bit higher than discount gold brokers in The Land of the Free but among the lowest in Asia. Singapore is one of my favorite places to store assets (of course, do your own due diligence).

Andrew Henderson
Last updated: Jan 28, 2020 at 2:03PM

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5 Comments

  1. Dave Blanco

    I agree… when holding gold coin in Europe, go with the Philharmoniker for easy recognition. Any bank in Austria will sell and buy them back from you. And no account or ID required for cash purchases under €15.000 😉

    Reply
  2. Ranger

    Sadly the majority of Americans have no idea nor do they care about the banking and financial system. They are clueless as to the deteriorating condition it lays in. Most have no investments in anything except paper, which will become its true intrinsic value of zero very soon. Hardly any of the public owns gold or silver.
    The people I speak with talk about their 401(k) and IRA’s, but have no idea that those are empty paper markers that hold non asset value whatsoever, with the only exception but to borrow from. Those 401(k) and IRA’s will become zero as soon as the derivatives take them down.

    Remember that money never disappears, it is merely transferred to someone elses pocket.

    Reply
  3. Max

    ….and the gold price went from $1,300 in 2014 when this article was written to $1,200 now.

    Reply
    • Bob

      Pretty sure gold’s wealth retention properties are what most people are interested in it for, more of a retirement investment than a daddy needs a new car investment. I’m sure plenty of people try and do make money from short term investing with it , and sure No one wants a nearly 10% hit, but over four years… When you can almost guarantee ull get it back … Its attractive to lots of people.

      Reply
  4. Charl

    No 4 is South African Krugerrands not South American

    Reply

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