Mini Krugerrands


1-oz-krugerrand-springbok-sideBefore establishing a correct definition of the South African mini Krugerrand, it is helpful to understand the history behind this coin and why it has become so amazingly popular among collectors. But first, before you invest in a full one-ounce Krugerrand or a mini Krugerrand, beware of hoaxes! It is untrue that the Shroud of Turin – believed by some to be the burial cloth of Jesus Christ, contains images of coins over the body’s eyes that appear amazingly similar to mini Krugerrands! Also, there is no such thing as a silver Krugerrand; check your facts with a reputable coin dealer before investing in any type of coin collecting.

Briefly, the South African Krugerrand was the first one troy ounce gold coin that could be used as legal tender at the market value of its face gold content. Krugerrands are sold at a small premium above the market price of gold at the time of sale. Krugerrands were originally minted to encourage South Africans to own gold privately; several countries followed suit with the U.S. Golden Eagle and the Canadian Maple Leaf one-ounce coins.

By making the coin legal tender, one-ounce Krugerrands and smaller mini Krugerrands could be owned by citizens of the United States, which at that time prohibited private ownership of bullion but allowed ownership of foreign coins. However, due to the policy of apartheid in South Africa, the Krugerrand was declared illegal to import in many Western countries during the 1970s and 1980s until South African political reform from 1990 to 1994. With the abolishment of apartheid, mini Krugerrands and their larger “cousins” became legal imports to the U.S.

Today Krugerrands are minted in several sizes, including mini Krugerrands of one-half ounce, one-quarter ounce, and one-tenth ounces. Mini Krugerrands are said by coin collectors to have resulted from the failure of the U.S. Susan B. Anthony dollar coin and unsuccessful attempts in 1976 to re-introduce the U.S. two-dollar bill. Unlike full-sized Krugerrands, mini Krugerrands are often used in South African marketplaces because of their purity in face value and ease of carrying in one’s pocket or purse.

One way to make sure your mini Krugerrand is genuine is to examine the “reeded” edge of the coin; there are certain numbers of these indentations on each genuine Krugerrand. For example, a one-ounce Krugerrand has 180 edge reeds. The one-half ounce mini Krugerrand has 150 reeds, and the mini Krugerrands of one-quarter ounce and one-tenth ounce have 140 and 115 reeds, respectively. Fortunately, some thieves who attempt to make fraudulent mini Krugerrands are lacking in knowledge about their “product” and produce the number of reeds incorrectly. Thus, when you buy any size Krugerrand on-line or from a collector, doing your homework on how to determine the genuineness of a coin is essential. If mini Krugerrands appeal to you as an affordable investment in gold coins, there are many books available to help you as well as honest collectors. Take your time, and don’t be fooled!

{ 4 comments }

Scott

I have some, 1980 Mini Gold Krugerrands. How much are they worth?

24K

Hi Scott-

Depends on the size- they should have the weight stamped on them. Once you know which one, you can check here for values: Krugerrand Prices.

John

I have 6 silver 1/10 ounce.silver Kugerrands. Is it true that they do not mint silver Kugerrands? The coins have .999 percent silver stamped on the reverse of the coin.

Are these fake?

24K

Hello John-

Depends on your definition of fake. The South African Mint definitely did not authorize these coins, they do not issue silver Krugerrands in any denomination. However, there are a few companies that stamp out Krugerrand copies in real silver, so they may actually have the silver they claim. I would take them to a dealer and have them professionally assessed- while you certainly do not have Krugerrands, you may in fact have they silver they claim.

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