What are the Best Buys in IRA-Approved Gold Coins?

For novice and inexperienced buyers looking to get into the gold coin game as part of an IRA purchase, the world of gold coins can seem like a dense, labyrinthine forest where it’s somewhere between difficult and impossible to determine the best value.

Fortunately there are guidelines, and plenty of experts who are happy to share their uniquely specialized knowledge. That doesn’t mean you’ll get a perfect coin, but it does mean there are some great buys out there, so let’s talk a look at some of the best buys when it comes to IRA approved gold coins.

IRA Approved Gold

The American Eagle

American Eagles are among the best of the best when it comes to buying gold coins. The US government is part of the equation, as it guarantees that these coins contain the exact amount of gold weight as it’s specified in troy ounces, which is the technical name for the numerical buying unit.

It also provides a way for buyers to distinguish American Eagles from other coins, as coins that don’t come from a US source aren’t generally approved for IRAs, even if they are considered certified coins.

The sizing of American Eagles also makes them ideal for gold IRAs. There are four different sizes—one ounce, a half-ounce, a quarter-ounce and a tenth of an ounce. This can help with affordability which may be an issue with smaller IRA accounts.

As a general rule, investors agree that the one-ounce coin is the best value. American Eagles in this size have been selling recently for somewhere in the neighborhood of $1700, although it’s important to check both the current value and the recent track record to get an idea of the true value of this size Eagle.

The Maple Leaf

The next best deal is the Maple Leaf, which tends to sell at a lower premium. Interestingly, it’s the aesthetics of the coin that make the difference—the Maple Leaf shows a portrait of the Queen herself, and a portrait of an older monarch just doesn’t measure up against the legendary American Eagle.

That doesn’t mean the Maple Leaf isn’t a good value. Maple coins are spectacular when it comes to their gold content, given that they’re made of 24-karat gold and are .9999 percent pure.

There’s another important difference as well. American Eagles are harder and more rigid than their Canadian counterparts, and the relative softness of the Maple Leaf allows wear marks to show, as does the fact that it’s made with milled edges.

The Maple Leafs were first mined in 1979, and those coins showed the queen when she was 39. The one-ounce version of the Maple Leaf was the only version of the coin that existed at that time, but there are now five sizes available, four of which are identical to their US counterparts, with a size of one-twentieth of an ounce added to the mix.

That makes the Maple Leaf extremely affordable, but the value of this kind of affordability depends to some extent on the budget of the buyer. The best value remains the one-ounce size for either coin, but you need to know your stuff when it comes to Maple Leaf pricing as well.

Maple Leafs have been selling for about $1500, and the next notch down price-wise is the Vienna Philharmonic one-ounce gold coin, which goes for slightly less.

Any discount you get on a given coin will likely disappear once the general price of gold goes up. Coin supplies can be quite volatile, and any disruption in supply or price change will mean that investors will evaluate different kinds of coins based solely on their gold content.

Other Gold Coins

There are other IRA-approved gold coins you can purchase, so the American Eagle, the Maple Leaf and the Vienna Philharmonic aren’t the only gold coin games in town.

You can also invest in one-ounce American Gold Buffalo coins, or you can go with the one-ounce Australian Gold Kangaroo coins, and this is just a partial list of possibilities. There are more options when it comes to gold bars, so if you can’t find the size you need or you’re looking for a better value, it’s a good idea to shop around to locate your ultimate best buy. For each gold IRA provider you consider buying coins from, check if this site has an updated gold IRA review for that exact company.