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Palladium Coins

These coins are made of palladium, a rare silver-white metal with a purity of 99.95%. Palladium is a versatile and valuable metal with various industrial, technological, medical, and investment applications, prized for its catalytic properties and rarity.

Palladium belongs to the platinum group metals, along with platinum, rhodium, ruthenium, iridium, and osmium. These metals share similar chemical properties. Many precious metals speculators say that it is around 30 times rarer than gold.

Issuing Authority and Legal Tender Value

Palladium American Eagle: Issued by the United States Mint, it has a legal tender value in the United States, although the face value is symbolic and much lower than the metal value.

  • One Ounce ($25 USD)
  • Minted by the U.S. Mint
  • Backed by the U.S. government

Palladium Canadian Maple Leaf: Issued by the Royal Canadian Mint, it is legal tender in Canada with a symbolic face value.

  • One Ounce ($50 CAD)
  • Minted by the Royal Canadian Mint
  • Backed by the Canadian government

Design

Palladium American Eagle

The design often features iconic American imagery. For example, past designs have included Liberty, the American Eagle, or other symbols representative of the United States.

Palladium Canadian Maple Leaf

This coin typically features the maple leaf, a national symbol of Canada, on one side, and the likeness of Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse. Current versions feature King Charles III.

Palladium Liquidity

The price of each coin is influenced by the market value of palladium, and the liquidity of palladium is driven by the balance between its industrial demand and supply. Both are liquid assets, but market demand and collector interest can vary between the two. Additionally, special releases may have varied demand, or it may take longer to find the right buyer

As a crucial component in automotive catalytic converters, palladium experiences significant industrial demand. However, its supply is limited as it is a rare metal with Russia being its largest producer followed by South Africa. Since major palladium supplies are concentrated in a few countries, geopolitical stability in these regions can impact its availability and trade, influencing liquidity.

Precious Metals IRAs (Individual Retirement Accounts)

Certain Palladium items are approved for precious metals IRAs. To make the list, the bars and rounds must be 99.95% fine. The Palladium American Eagle and Canadian Maple Leaf coins meet the purity requirement.

Industrial Uses

The largest use of palladium is in catalytic converters for cars, which reduce the harmfulness of emissions by converting exhaust gases into less harmful substances. It is estimated that up to 85 percent of palladium produced is used in the automotive industry. It is also used in electronics, dentistry, and the medical industry.

Palladium Coin Versions

While Canada keeps their versions simple, there are many versions of the American Palladium coin to choose from, which can be confusing to new investors. Variances may include graded coins, proofs, burnished and more. Some coins may carry more than one designation.

Understanding what these designations mean can help you make a more informed investment decision.

Brilliant Uncirculated (BU)

A Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) palladium coin has never been circulated and retains most of its original mint luster. These coins are in the same condition they were when they left the mint, although they may have minor blemishes or imperfections from the minting process or handling.

Proof

Palladium proof coins are struck using specially prepared planchets and dies. The dies are treated to create a mirrored finish on the coin's surface, and the planchets are polished to ensure a smooth and clean surface. The coins are struck multiple times with higher pressure than regular circulation coins, providing sharp and intricate details.

Reverse Proof

In a standard palladium proof coin, the background has a mirror-like finish, while the raised design elements (like figures, symbols, or text) have a frosted appearance. In a reverse proof coin, this is inverted so the background or field has a frosted matte finish, and the raised design elements are polished to a mirror-like shine.

Graded

Graded palladium coins are coins evaluated and assigned a quality grade by a professional coin grading service. Coins are graded by professional organizations like the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) or the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS). These entities specialize in determining the condition and authenticity of coins. Coins with a quality rating of SP-70, MS-70, or PF-70 are deemed the highest quality.

Burnished

Burnished palladium coins are struck from specially treated blanks, known as planchets. These planchets are polished before striking, usually in a drum with a burnishing medium (like small beads or pebbles) to give them a smooth, matte-like finish.

Deep Cameo or Ultra Cameo

Deep Cameo or Ultra Cameo refers to proof coins exhibiting a stark contrast between the frosted design elements (figures, symbols, or text) and the mirror-like background. The designation of "Deep Cameo" or "Ultra Cameo" is typically used by grading services (like NGC or PCGS).

First Stike (FS)

The First Strike label is applied to coins delivered or shipped from the mint within the first 30 days of production. This designation suggests that these coins are among the earliest struck with a new die.

First Release (FR)

Coins designated as First Release are typically graded and certified by reputable coin grading services like the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) or the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS). They are coins received to an approved depository within 30 days of the first release of the new coin.

Early Release (ER)

"Early Release" (ER) is a designation given to coins by a third-party grading service. These coins are released to NGC within the first 30 days of release.

First Day Issue (FDI)

"First Day of Issue" (FDI) is a designation assigned by third-party grading services to coins that were received for certification on the first day of their official release by the mint.

While both the Palladium American Eagle and the Palladium Canadian Maple Leaf share similarities in terms of their metal content and purity, they differ in design, issuing authority, and potentially in their appeal to different segments of investors and collectors.

Palladium is considered a liquid asset. Its liquidity can be affected by a range of economic, industrial, geopolitical, and market factors. Investors in palladium, whether in physical form or through financial instruments, need to be aware of these dynamics.

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