There are many gold coins in the market and an investor needs to decide which ones to add to his portfolio. Undoubtedly, two of the best British coins that are attractive to investors are the Gold Britannia and the Gold Sovereign. In this article, we will explore the merits and demerits of both these coins and assess them based on key attributes and fundamentals required for building a strong portfolio.
Variety is the spice of life
A key consideration when choosing any gold coin for your portfolio is variety. As an investor, you need to have a good distribution of popular gold coins in different sizes and dimensions. There can also be variations based on the year of issue. The Gold Sovereign is an excellent choice when it comes to variety. The coin has been around for more than two centuries and several issues over the years are available from the reigns of different British Kings and Queens. In terms of size, there is also a wide choice that’s available.
The Sovereign comes in different denominations such as the half, double and quintuple Sovereigns. Within the reign of just one British monarch – Queen Victoria, there are three available variations of the Sovereign. These are well-known as the Young Head, the Jubilee Head and the Old Head. When one takes into consideration all the attributes of the Gold Sovereign, it can be called an excellent choice that adds divisibility, variety and balance to your investment portfolio. When we compare the Britannia to the Sovereign, it’s worth noting that the Britannia only carries the portrait of our current Queen, Elizabeth II. On the other hand, the modern Sovereign carries the images of eight British monarchs.
Value for money
Gold Sovereigns are around one quarter the size of Britannias (1oz), making them slightly more expensive per gram due to the higher relative production cost. However, their smaller size provides more flexibility for gold investors. A mix of both is preferable in a portfolio, especially as both coins are tax-free in the UK due to their legal tender status.
Some Sovereigns may carry premiums based on their rarity and historical value, however, Sovereigns that were minted as a bullion coin are easily available at low premiums. By this comparison, the Gold Britannia is also a bullion coin that has been around since 1987. Since it is a recent coin, Gold Britannias do not carry any historical premiums. The coin is easily available from most gold dealers with greater discounts on larger volume purchases. However, the Britannia is four times larger than the Sovereign in size, making it a more expensive coin.
The Sovereign provides a greater variety and choice when compared to the Gold Britannia. Due to its smaller sizes, the Sovereign provides investors with the freedom and flexibility to sell the coin at various price points in the market by trading in different sizes and denominations.
Liquidity is an important consideration
In terms of liquidity, both coins are evenly poised, since they enjoy a strong secondary market. For investors, liquidity is a very important factor as investing in obscure coins defeats the objective of investment. The coin should be saleable at any given point in time for an investor to redeem its value. The Gold Britannia and the Sovereign are both excellent coins in this respect.
Which is the right coin for you?
The gold experts at Physical Gold can answer this question, based on the fundamentals and objectives of your investment. They can offer you free advice on whether you should buy, the Gold Britannia or the Gold Sovereign. Two find out more, call us on (020) 7060 9992 or drop us an email and a member of our team will be happy to get in touch with you.
Many gold and silver coins are considered legal tender in the UK. When a coin becomes legal tender, it implies that you can purchase goods and pay for the same, using the coin. Therefore, it is mandatory for any business within the economy to accept this coin as currency.
The Gold Sovereign
The Sovereign has a long history that makes it one of the most iconic coins in British coinage. During the reign of King Henry VII, an English coin called the Sovereign was brought into circulation in 1489. Subsequently, King James I acceded to the English throne by 1603. He also issued a Sovereign to commemorate the year of his coronation. However, by 1660, King Charles II had come into power and the Royal Mint went through a period of reorganisation. During this time, the Sovereign faded away and was replaced by the Guinea.
The modern Sovereigns
By 1816, a new coinage act was instituted across Great Britain, and the gold standard was implemented. It was around this time that the Italian designer, Benedetto Pistrucci arrived in London and was commissioned to design a new coin. He created the design of St George slaying the dragon, and a new gold coin christened the Sovereign was released depicting the head of King George III. Since then, the Gold Sovereign was used throughout the reigns of different monarchs. King George III was succeeded by King George IV and later by his third son, King William IV, whose short reign lasted from 1830 to 1837. Upon his death in 1837, Queen Victoria inherited the throne.
Through the reign of monarchs
The reign of Queen Victoria saw the issuance of three Sovereigns, which are now popularly known as the Young Head, the Jubilee Head and the Old Head. The Sovereign continued to be in circulation throughout the reigns of the Queen’s successors, namely, King Edward VII and King George V. Although the coin was withdrawn from circulation during the earlier part of the 20th century, it continued to be struck as a bullion coin and continued to be recognised as legal tender in the UK.
Old Sovereigns are legal tender in the UK due to their £1 face value. In theory, you can use the Sovereign to purchase goods up to £1 in value, but the gold content of the coin is worth far more. Its legal tender status is important for gold investors as it deems any profits made from Sovereigns as tax-free.
A timeless classic
The Sovereign’s long history through the centuries has made it a timeless coin that is extremely attractive to collectors and investors alike. Of course, there are other iconic British coins like the Gold Britannia. However, the Britannia was only issued in 1987. The prestige and status enjoyed by the Gold Sovereign lasted throughout the glorious years of the British Empire.
It became synonymous with the status of the British Monarch and propaganda posters were printed during the First World War, depicting a Gold Sovereign, with the head of King George V. The poster carried the tagline, “The British Sovereign will win.” The poster was used to encourage citizens of the Empire to invest money in a government scheme, designed to raise funds for the war.
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Physical Gold is one of the nation’s most reputed precious metal dealers. We have a team of experts and researchers who can assist you in getting a great deal on Gold Sovereigns. Please call us on (020) 7060 9992 or get in touch with us online.
Gold Sovereign coins are one of the most popular British coins that attract investors every year. The Sovereign has been around for more than two centuries and benefits from abundant availability and low prices. The modern Sovereigns are available as bullion coins and carry low premiums due to mass production and lower manufacturing costs. The gold Sovereign is also a very affordable coin, since it is available in smaller sizes, as a quarter of an ounce. The gold Britannia, on the other hand, is a 1-ounce coin that is far more expensive than the Sovereign.
Great value for money
Due to their affordability factor, the gold Sovereign allows beginner investors access to the gold market by investing a smaller sum of money. Investors can also enjoy the flexibility of owning gold Sovereigns. Due to their smaller sizes, they add divisibility to an investor’s portfolio. From a tax perspective, Sovereigns are a great investment. Investors do not pay any VAT when buying the coins. Since the Sovereign is considered to be legal tender, investors can also avoid paying Capital Gains Tax (CGT) on the profits made from the sale of these coins.
Buying gold Sovereigns
The growing interest amongst investors in buying gold Sovereigns, leads many people to ask the question – what is the best route to buy Gold Sovereigns? Of course, many would turn to high-street jewellers and gold shops. This is an old route, mainly for people who like to see and touch the gold they’re buying. However, over the last 10 years, much of the gold trade has moved online. Today, if you’re buying investment-grade coins like the gold Sovereign, it’s best to buy from a reputed online dealer.
It’s safest to buy gold Sovereigns directly from a reputable precious metals dealer. If the dealership has the right credentials, it will ensure the Sovereigns are authentic, in great condition and sell at a competitive price. Many now have e-commerce stores, making it easy to buy online. Buying from a jeweller, an auction or privately are other options, but they pose significant risks.
Reputed online gold sovereign dealers
Moreover, large online dealers are more likely to stock a diverse range of gold products. By visiting the dealer’s website, you will probably see a variety and volumes of investable gold coins like the Sovereign. High-street dealers usually do not have such a large inventory. Due to their buying power, reputed online dealers are also able to offer rock bottom prices, especially on larger volume purchases. Many dealers, like Physical Gold, also have a monthly purchase scheme, through which you can regularly invest in gold Sovereigns and build up a formidable gold portfolio.
Safety and security
Online gold dealers will also ensure that your transaction is conducted with utmost safety. Online payments are made using a debit or credit card, through a secure, encrypted payment gateway. Physical Gold, a reputed UK dealer uses a 3D secure payment method. Your gold Sovereigns are dispatched via a secure courier, and your package is fully insured. Many large dealers may also offer you the option of storing your gold securely with them in an LBMA approved vault. Lastly, all reputed dealers will provide an authenticity certificate and a buyback scheme. It is unlikely that you would get all this when you shop for your coins on the high street.
Get in touch with Physical Gold to find out more about buying gold Sovereigns
At Physical Gold, we pride ourselves on being one of the country’s most reputed online gold dealers. Our experts are always willing and ready to work out the best deal on gold Sovereigns for you. Call us today on (020) 7060 9992, or reach out to us online by visiting our website.
Gold Sovereigns have been around for more than two centuries and have an important place in any investor’s portfolio. Gold Sovereigns enjoy tremendous liquidity, as it is one of the best-known British coins in the world. Many collectors and investors are keen to invest in this coin. There are also many different years of issue associated with the Sovereign, at different price points. Older Sovereigns may command more value due to their rarity. However, newer Sovereigns are easily available at low premiums. The decision to invest in gold Sovereigns need to be based on certain factors.
Divisibility and balance
Sovereigns are available as a bullion coin, but a unique quality is their gold content. Most bullion coins typically weigh an ounce. However, Gold Sovereigns weigh a quarter of an ounce. Therefore, investors can explore a wonderful opportunity to build a portfolio with a variety of coins. Buying Sovereigns of different denominations can enhance the divisibility of your portfolio. This simply means that you have greater flexibility when selling. This is a better option than selling a 1-ounce bullion coin at a certain price point in the market. Owning Sovereigns of different dimensions and different years of issue can also help create a balance for your portfolio.
The Sovereign is a more affordable coin due to its smaller size. As an investor, the coin allows you access to the gold market with a lower investment. As a mass-produced coin, Sovereigns are a lot cheaper when compared to the Gold Britannia. Therefore, a great investment strategy is to buy Gold Sovereigns every month. Sovereign bullion coins, present an opportunity to acquire gold at a cheaper price per gram, due to their lower manufacturing costs.
Creating variety for your portfolio
So far, we have covered some important points that will help you select the right gold Sovereign. We have established that gold bullion coins are better for investment. Since the Sovereign is available in smaller denominations, we have also discussed that having a variety of sizes can create an advantage for your gold portfolio.
When buying a Sovereign bullion coin, always look for the current year of issue. These are available in plentiful, at rock bottom prices and low premiums. Apart from new coins, what else should you look for? Gold Sovereigns enjoy a strong supply pipeline and many modern Sovereigns from the past 10 years are easily available. You may be able to obtain some of these coins at better prices than the new ones. Spreading your investment over a variety of modern Sovereigns can be a sensible approach towards creating variety for your portfolio and making it stronger.
Buying old Sovereigns
The best old Sovereign to buy based on price is the current year of issue. Sovereign prices are based more on gold content. If seeking a combination of value and history, the George V and Elizabeth II coins provide the optimum all-round solution. If buying many Sovereigns, a combination with older Victoria coins is best.
The Sovereigns from the reign of King George V are still available at affordable prices, due to their availability. However, these coins do offer enough numismatic value and interest, making them worth collecting. Edward VII Sovereigns are more expensive to buy but worth acquiring if you can get a good deal on them. Queen Victoria have three different Sovereigns that were issued during her reign. These are called the Young Head, Jubilee Head and the Old Head. These are the most expensive coins among the modern Sovereigns, but investing in them can fetch good returns, as their value continues to rise due to rarity.
Our gold experts can advise you on the right Sovereigns to buy
Physical Gold is one of the most reputed gold dealers in the UK. We have a team of gold experts who can help you purchase the best Sovereigns for your investment portfolio. Call us today on (020) 7060 9992, or get in touch online through our website.
If you want to collect a piece of history, along with unmatched value, look no further than the Gold Sovereign. While the Gold Britannia may be the flagship coin of the Royal Mint, the Gold Sovereign is perhaps the most iconic coin ever issued as a part of British coinage. The coin is heralded as one of the oldest British coins that have been around for more than 200 years.
The gold Sovereign
There is a distinction between the modern Gold Sovereign and the older coin that was issued during mediaeval times. The modern Sovereign has seen the face of several British monarchs. The coin was around during the reigns of the great Queen Victoria and Edward VII, followed by King George V, Emperor of the British Empire during the First Great War.
The Sovereign was continued during the reign of King George VI, who ruled the Empire during World War II and continued into the reign of his daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, our current British monarch. The older Sovereign was issued in 1489 during the reign of King Henry VII. However, the mintage of the Sovereign was terminated in 1604. The coin was reintroduced only in 1817.
An illustrious history
It’s not just the history that makes this coin attractive. The Sovereign has a unique design. The reverse of the coin features an image of St George slaying a dragon. This iconic image was conceptualised by the famous Italian designer and engraver, Benedetto Pistrucci. The coin is indeed a work of art, as well as a representation of the fineness and elegance of British coinage.
Which Sovereigns should I buy?
The first consideration for any investor is affordability. Most investors want value for money. Old Sovereigns are small in size and therefore affordable. Having been produced for over 200 years, they’re very easy to sell on and can make a good investment if the gold price goes up. Their value generally increases with age and any profit made on their sale is completely tax-exempt in the UK. It’s also important to research the secondary market. Due to its long years of production, the gold Sovereign enjoys a vibrant secondary market. Many Sovereigns that have been issued over the years are available at different price points. So, it’s important to build a relationship with a reputed gold dealer and find out the best deals on Sovereigns that you can benefit from.
Divisibility is an important differentiator
A definitive reason to invest in gold Sovereigns is the divisibility it brings to your portfolio. There is a wide variety of different sizes to choose from. As an investor, if you prefer larger coins with lower production costs, the full sovereign, the double Sovereign, and the quintuple Sovereign could be just right for you. The latter two are known as the 2-pound coin and the 5-pound coin, respectively. However, it may make sense to invest in smaller coins, which gives you the flexibility of selling small amounts of gold at the right price points. In that case, you have the option of acquiring the half and quarter sovereign. Incidentally, the quintuple Sovereign is perhaps one of the most famous, as it has the largest gold content ever found in a British coin.
Accessibility to the gold market
Another important reason to buy gold Sovereigns is that it is an affordable coin when compared to the gold Britannia. Investors can therefore own a sovereign, with a lesser amount of capital outlay and enjoy its benefits, including VAT and CGT exemptions.
Get in touch with Physical Gold for the best deals in gold Sovereigns
Our numismatic experts at Physical Gold can advise you on how to avail of the best deals when buying gold Sovereigns. Call us on (020) 7060 9992 or visit our website and get in touch with us online.
Gold Britannia coins are extremely popular amongst investors for several reasons. Firstly, being one of the most popular British coins in the world, the coin offers a tremendous amount of liquidity for any investor’s portfolio. However, there are other reasons for its popularity too.
Since 2013, gold Britannia coins are available in 24-carat gold. Therefore, the coin presents an irresistible opportunity to acquire a 1-ounce gold coin manufactured with 99.9% pure gold. It’s important to note that until 2012, gold Britannias were minted using 22-carat gold, with a fineness of 91.7%.
The gold Britannia coin was originally introduced in 1987. From 1987 till 1989, copper was the base metal introduced into gold. This was changed from 1990 to silver, making the Britannia coin minted completely out of precious metals.
A question that many investors ask is whether the gold Britannia is a legal tender coin.
Yes, they are legal tender within the UK. All Britannia fractions and precious metals feature Queen Elizabeth on the obverse of the coin and a face value. These features qualify the coins as legal tender so in theory they can be spent in shops. However, with the 1oz gold Britannia boasting a £100 face value but being worth ten times that it would be foolish to do so. More commonly, the legal tender status increases the coins’ appeal due to it not being subject to Capital Gains Tax.
However, there are certain limits to this tax exemption. The Capital Gains Tax exemption on gold Britannia coins is up to a limit of £12,000 of profits made from sales in a single tax year. So, it’s important to understand that the entire amount collected from a sale isn’t taxable. It’s only the gains made by the seller or the difference between the buying and selling price. If these gains exceed £ 12,000 in one tax year, only the amount above this limit would become taxable, not all the profits.
Any official currency that has a face value, minted by the Royal Mint and signed off under the Royal Proclamation is considered to be legal tender in the UK. These rules are part of the Coinage Act 1971 and the Currency Act 1983. Legal tender coins include all coins in circulation, Maundy money and precious metal coins minted by the Royal Mint. Coins that have been withdrawn from circulation do not qualify as legal tender in the UK. For example, the old ‘round pound’ has been withdrawn from circulation and does not qualify as legal tender from 15th October 2017. However, they can be exchanged in a bank.
Other important points to note about legal tender currency
An important point to note is that gold and silver coins may not qualify as legal tender if the weight of the coin is found to be less than the specified weight denoted on the coin. Even today, several places outside the UK accept British legal tender coins.
These are British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies, like the Channel Islands, Falkland Islands, and many other places like Gibraltar and Ascension Island. However, the local currencies of these places are not accepted as legal tender in the UK. An interesting anomaly is Scotland and Northern Ireland, where Bank of England notes are not considered to be legal tender.
Talk to Physical Gold for all coin related information
The coin experts at Physical Gold are always willing and ready to respond to any queries you may have regarding precious metal coins. Get in touch with us today on (020) 7060 9992 or visit our website and contact us online.
The gold Britannia is an iconic British coin that enjoys popularity and liquidity all over the world. The flagship coin has become the backbone of any gold investment portfolio. It is interesting to note that, unlike the gold sovereign, the Britannia has only been around since 1987. So, the coin is available at relatively low premiums and does not command a historical or rarity value. Due to continuous mintage by the Royal Mint, the coin is easily available in abundance.
Why is the gold Britannia an attractive investment?
For gold investors, these coins offer amazing value due to mass production and large sizes. Additionally, the gold Britannia is completely tax-free in the UK due to its status as legal tender. Investors do not have to pay VAT or CGT (Capital Gains Tax) on these coins. This means that any profits that an investor may make through the sale of gold Britannia coins are tax-free up to a limit of £12,000 in a single tax year. Undoubtedly, the tax efficiency factor hugely enhances its appeal for investors.
Where can one buy cheap gold Britannia coins?
Usually, the latest year of issue Britannia is the cheapest for the simple reason that they are the most plentiful. It is important to note that investors should look for bullion coins to be able to buy at the best rate. According to the Royal Mint, the Gold Britannia bullion coin is manufactured each year with an unlimited mintage. However, this does not imply that infinite numbers of the coin will become available every year.
The actual production numbers are largely dependent on market demand. These numbers are also dependent on the amount of gold that the Royal Mint can source every year to meet the required demand and produce the gold Britannia coins. The coins are struck at the Royal Mint’s facility in Llantrisant where blank, faceless 1-ounce gold coins are received by the state of the art coin pressing machinery and printed with the obverse and reverse of the Britannia coins. Of these, the basic, mass-produced bullion version is cheaper than any special edition varieties or proof productions.
What are the other avenues of buying the cheapest gold Britannia coins?
Generally, older Britannias cost more due to scarcity and collectability, but occasionally it may be possible to find even cheaper pre-owned coins if someone has sold a large quantity at one time. In fact, one of the guiding principles in buying gold coins is to generally avoid older coins that carry hefty premiums and totally avoid obscure gold coins.
Low mintage in specific years can also be a problem, raising the price of the coin due to scarcity. For example, in 1998, the Royal Mint released only 750 gold Britannia bullion coins. Similarly, in 2002, only 945 coins of the 1-ounce gold Britannia were released. These numbers are much smaller when compared to 2010 when 14,727 gold Britannia bullion coins were minted.
So, buying the cheapest gold Britannia coins can mean looking out for the years of issue with easy availability and large mintage numbers. Of course, since 2013 the gold Britannia is also available in a greater number of size options like the half, quarter, one 10th and one 20th of an ounce. These are likely to be cheaper, due to the lesser amount of gold contained in the coin.
Call Physical Gold to find out about the best deals in gold coins
Physical Gold is a highly reputed, leading gold dealer in the country. We can offer the best advice when it comes to purchasing gold Britannia coins at the cheapest prices. Call us today on (020) 7060 9992 or get in touch with us via email.
Are you looking for a unique and special gift to give a loved one this Easter? Easter is now the second biggest holiday of the year for gifting presents, after Christmas. It is no longer enough to simply buy someone chocolate. Gift giving at Easter is becoming increasingly popular. Here at Physical Gold, we specialise in a wide range of one-off gold investments including bullion coins and gold bars, the perfect gifts this Easter.
Easter 2021 Dates
The dates for Easter 2021 are:
Good Friday – April 2nd, 2021
Easter Sunday – April 4th, 2021
Easter Bank Holiday Monday – April 5th, 2021
Gold’s association with Easter
There are many traditions that are typically associated with the Easter holidays. Bunny’s, cards, chocolate eggs, and hot cross buns to name but a few. Gold’s association with Easter, however, goes a long way back and it has often been a common practice to paint an egg gold or decorate it in gold leaf at Easter.
This practice was partly influenced by King Edward 1 who once ordered 450 eggs to be gold leaved and coloured to give as gifts to the royal household. Gold is widely recognised as one of the official colours of Easter, along with purple (colour of lent), white (colour of Easter Sunday) and red (the blood of Jesus).
Before this though, graves in Egypt have found ostrich eggs decorated in gold and silver which were dated to five thousand years ago, so the link between gold and eggs actually far pre-dates Easter.
Read the FREE Gold Insider’s Guide PDF to ensure you buy the best gold
During the 13th century, the British royal family gave gifts of food, clothes and coins to the poor on the Thursday before Easter. By the time Charles II came to the throne in 1630, special coins known as Maundy money were produced specifically for the occasion. In the US, one of their long-standing Easter traditions is to fill Easter eggs with chocolate coins or sometimes even real coins can be used.
Gold coins such as Sovereigns and Britannias make very special and unique Easter gifts. Gold is seen as an excellent store of wealth and has continually held its value over long periods. The gift of gold is one that will last a lifetime as opposed to just the 15 minutes it takes to eat an Easter egg. Gold coins that are classed as British legal tender also benefit from being Vat and Capital gains tax-free in the UK providing, they are over 22 karats.
Here are three specific gold investments you may want to make this Easter, which suit a variety of budgets:
Gold represents the perfect gift for either a loved one or special family member this Easter. Not only is it something they can cherish and look after, with a view to possibly handing it down to future generations, it also introduces them to the world of investing.
Physical Gold has one of the largest selections of gold available in the UK. Whether you’re looking to purchase gold sovereigns or gold bars, we have the ideal gift for you this Easter. For more information on any of our product or services, please give us a call on 020 7060 9992.
Yes, the Platinum version of the popular gold and silver Britannia is easily available across the UK. The Britannia is a flagship gold coin released by the Royal Mint in 1987. The gold version of the coin released that year had a value of £100. It contained one Troy ounce of pure gold, which was 22 carats. In 2013, the purity of the coin was elevated to 999.9, or 24 carats. At the time, the South African gold Krugerrand was one of the most popular gold coins in the world.
The gold Britannia
The Royal Mint released the gold Britannia to compete with this coin and it soon became the most iconic British coin ever released. The gold Britannia remains attractive to investors due to its status as a VAT free and CGT free coin in the UK. The coins featured an image of the reigning British monarch, Queen, Elizabeth II on the obverse. The reverse of the coin features the classic image of the Britannia icon, with a shield and trident. The design of this coin was created by Philip Nathan.
The silver Britannia
In 1997, the Royal Mint introduced a silver version of the Britannia coin. The silver Britannia contained one Troy ounce of pure silver and had a face value of 2 pounds. The first design of this coin was created by the famous designer, Jody Clark. The silver Britannia gained popularity over the years, due to its easy availability as a bullion coin. It also allowed coin collectors and investors to acquire the Britannia coin in silver, at a fraction of the price of the gold coin.
Different issues of the Britannia coin
The original gold Britannia was initially released in four different sizes. Apart from the 1-ounce coin, it was also available in smaller dimensions, weighing a half ounce, quarter ounce and 1/10 of an ounce. However, since 2013, the gold Britannia became available in a variety of sizes, which included a large 5-ounce coin. While smaller denominations of the coin allowed investors to create divisibility in their portfolio, some investors prefer the large coin, as they were able to acquire a larger amount of gold for a lower price per gram.
The Platinum Britannia
2018 saw the first-ever platinum Britannia issued by the Royal Mint. It is a 1oz coin and is minted in 999.5 pure platinum. It has a face value of £100. This follows the first silver version in 1997 and the first gold edition in 1987, demonstrating the spread of different precious metals that are popular amongst investors.
Details of the Platinum Britannia
The Platinum Britannia coin released in 2018 featured a diameter of 32.69 mm. Once again, the obverse of the coin was designed by Jody Clark, while the reverse featured the iconic Britannia image designed by Philip Nathan. The obverse of the coin has an interesting change in design, with a guilloche background. It has an intertwined background with small studs engraved into the body of the coin that creates a brilliant effect in Platinum.
The Platinum Britannia coin was released with an unlimited mintage, which ensured easy availability for investors. The coin was minted by the Royal Mint to bullion standard and considered legal tender in the UK. While the Platinum coin is not VAT-free, it is, however, CGT free, due to its status as a UK legal tender coin. The coin provides a great opportunity for UK investors to spread their investments across a range of precious metals, moving away from the traditional gold and silver.
Talk to our experts for all your precious metal coin investments
At Physical Gold, our experts are readily available to offer you free advice on the best precious metal coins that you can buy. Platinum is a great choice and we can help you get the best deals if you wish to buy Platinum Britannia coins. Call us on (020) 7060 9992 and connect with our team members for a chat today. Alternatively, you can also reach us online by sending us an email via our website.
The Britannia is one of the most famous coins ever released in British coinage history. It is the pride and joy of the Royal Mint and also forms the backbone of any precious metal coin portfolio. The Britannia is available in both gold and silver and offers tremendous liquidity to the portfolio of an investor. Due to its reputation as one of the best-known coins in the world, it is easily saleable for cash.
The Britannia coin
The Britannia gold coin is a 1-ounce coin with a purity of 999.9 and a face value of 100 GBP that was launched by the Royal Mint in 1987. It is available in bullion and proof finishes, as well as fractional sizes. The Royal Mint also introduced a silver Britannia coin in 1997, which has a face value of 2 pounds. The silver Britannia contains one Troy ounce of fine silver. Both the gold and the silver coin feature a portrait of the reigning British monarch, Queen, Elizabeth II on the obverse of the coin. The reverse of the coin features the classic image of Britannia. The event featured on the coins issued from 1987, was designed by Philip Nathan. In 2018, the Royal Mint also released a Platinum version of the Britannia coin that contains one Troy ounce of Platinum and has a face value of £100.
Who was Britannia?
In 43AD Britannia meant Roman Britain. This was an area to the south of what is known today as Scotland. In 197AD Roman Britain was divided into 4 provinces and 2 of these were Britannia Superior and Britannia Inferior. Britannia was the name given to this Island. In the 2nd Century, Roman Britannia was what is recognised today as the goddess armed with a trident and shield. Britannia was featured on all modern British coinage until being redesigned in 2008.
The Romans used the term ‘Britannicae’ to refer to the British Isles. The inhabitants of Britain were called ‘Britons’ at the time. Another name for the people of the British Isles used by the Romans was ‘Britanni’. Since the British Isles represented the furthest territory of the Roman Empire, it became symbolised with the goddess of warfare and water. Roman mythology portrays a goddess called Minerva, who is popularly known as the torchbearer of arts, commerce, strategy and wisdom. The image of Britannia was based on the icon of goddess Minerva and came to personify the British Isles over the years.
Reinforcement of the Britannia image
After the invasion of England by the Anglo-Saxons, the ethnicity of the country changed drastically, with the exodus of the original Celtic Britons. However, years later, as Queen Elizabeth, I combined England, Scotland, Ireland. and Wales and significantly increased the nation’s naval power, the image of Britannia was restored as a representation of the nation’s power and the Queen. This was further reinforced during the reign of the great Queen Victoria when the British Empire became the most powerful empire in the world and Britannia ruled the waves. The iconic image of Britannia was then put firmly in place to represent the power of the British Empire, and its monarch.
Physical Gold can assist you in purchasing Britannia coins
Whether it’s gold Britannias or silver ones that you’re after, our coin experts at Physical Gold can advise you on how to get the best deals. Call us on (020) 7060 9992 or drop us an email and a member of our team will reach out to you at the earliest.
Although the name may lead people into thinking that colloidal silver is a certain type of physical silver, in reality, it is quite different from a silver bar or coin. When tiny silver particles are suspended in a liquid, the suspension is known as colloidal silver. The size of these particles is so minuscule that they cannot be removed from the liquid by standard laboratory filtration processes. Many of the particles are invisible to the human eye and could be classified as nano-particles. Colloidal silver has been popular as an alternative therapy for many common human ailments over the years.
Colloidal silver’s uses in medicine
Colloidal silver can be used to treat viral infections that antibiotics cannot such as bronchitis or pneumonia. It can relieve sufferers of airborne allergies when used as a nasal spray. Most commonly, it is used as an anti-inflammatory and antiviral, with it even helping fight the HIV and hepatitis viruses. Its antibacterial qualities help fight antibiotic-resistant superbugs.
How does it work?
Colloidal Silver can be ingested orally as a dietary supplement. Alternatively, it can also be applied to the skin. This remedy has been around for centuries, long before the discovery of antibiotics. Some doctors and scientists believe that colloidal silver is a placebo, and doesn’t really work as a remedy for any illness.
However, some research that has been conducted, appears to indicate that colloidal silver can attach itself to the proteins present on the cell walls of bacteria. This causes damage to the cell membrane of the bacteria, allowing the silver ions to enter the cell and destabilise the bacteria’s metabolic processes, and destroy it. More silver ions are released through suspensions that have a larger number of small particles.
Where is colloidal silver used?
Due to its ability to destroy a wide range of bacteria, colloidal silver was an antibacterial remedy in vogue long before the discovery of antibiotics in western medicine. Today, it is used in several medicinal products like dressings and creams for wounds. However, there are certain risks associated with the ingestion of colloidal silver. Due to this, pharmaceutical companies do not include colloidal silver as an ingredient in oral medications.
What are the risks of consuming colloidal silver?
Human beings are usually exposed to minute amounts of silver daily through drinking water and the environment. However, continuous exposure to silver can be hazardous to human health. Medical scientists have ascertained that the most common risk associated with frequent exposure to colloidal silver is a condition known as Argyria. The silver particles found in colloidal silver can deposit themselves in our vital organs and skin. These deposits can turn the pallor of human skin into a greyish blue colour. The condition is often developed by people who are frequently exposed to large amounts of silver, either through their job or through the ingestion of certain dietary supplements. So, colloidal silver needs to be used judiciously for external use.
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At Physical Gold, our silver experts are always ready to answer your questions about any kind of silver. We have a wide range of precious metal investment options. Our team is best placed to discuss your silver requirements and advise you on the best products to buy. Call us today on (020) 7060 9992, or get in touch with us online via our website.
Silver and gold are both precious metals that are attractive to most investors. Many investors are keen to strike a balance between the two precious metals in their portfolio. To do that, one must understand the differences in the way these precious metals behave.
Setting your objectives
The initial step in deciding whether to buy silver or gold depends upon your investment objectives. Gold has always been perceived as a repository of value. Gold investments can offset the investment risks that your portfolio is exposed to. So, if your investment objectives are to build wealth and remove risk, gold can be the right choice for you. However, silver investments are more volatile, but the profit potential is great. So, if your objective is to make significant profits in the long run, silver is an excellent choice for you as an investor.
Over the last year, as the global pandemic engulfed the world, investors rapidly moved their money to gold. This was an expected development since gold is generally perceived as a safe haven for most investors. As a result of the large demand for gold, the price of the precious metal shot up to its highest levels. Currently, the spot price of gold is US$1,736 per ounce. However, in August 2020, gold prices breached the US$2,000 mark to reach its highest ever level of US$2,067 on 7th August 2020. Investors who had invested their money in gold with a five-year horizon had the opportunity to make great returns when selling.
A year in turmoil
2020 was an interesting year for other precious metals as well. Due to the high demand for gold, the gold-silver price ratio widened to an all-time high above 150:1 in March 2020, when gold reached its peak. However, the ratio has now fallen to 66:1. The current spot price of silver is US$26 per ounce. This is a significant rise from March 2019, when silver was trading at USD $15 per ounce. However, the industrial demand for silver continues to rise, in the face of dwindling supplies. This has led to speculation amongst investors that eventually the price of silver is likely to skyrocket, providing an excellent opportunity for profits.
Silver has in recent times between around 75 times cheaper than gold so is ideal for those with modest investment funds. Silver Britannia coins cost around £20 each so a silver portfolio can comprise of many coins offering increased divisibility over gold where you may only have one item. Due to its low price and vast uses in technology, there are numerous advantages of silver when compared to gold.
Silver offers investors the opportunity to enter the precious metals market at a low price point. However, the production costs of silver bars and coins are proportionally higher when compared to gold. If you consider the value of a gold bar, its production price becomes negligible. This is not the case with a silver bar. But, due to lower prices, silver offers investors a great chance to lock in prices and reap profits in the long run.
All investment-grade gold is VAT free and Capital Gains Tax exempt in the UK. Therefore, gold can be a better investment from a tax standpoint. Buying physical silver will add 20% to the overall price of the purchase due to VAT. Despite this, many investors find Silver attractive, due to the lower capital investment.
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As a precious metal, gold has very little competition. Its amazing chemical properties make it invaluable in the industry. Gold is used to manufacture jewellery, as a conductor in electronic components and even pulled out into wires. More importantly, gold is purchased by investors as coins and bars. Due to its price stability, investors often convert their money into gold during times of economic crisis. Investment-grade gold will normally be 22 carats or higher, with a fineness of 99.9%. All investment-grade gold bought in the UK is VAT exempt and CGT (Capital Gains Tax) exempt up to a limit.
However, when gold is used in industry, it needs to be melted down, according to the requirements of certain applications. Gold is often melted and then merged with other base metals like copper to achieve a certain level of hardness. Since gold is a soft metal, jewellery and other items cannot be formed when the metal is in its purest form. Gold is also alloyed with certain metals to obtain specific colours, which are popular amongst customers. The formation of gold bars also requires the metal to be melted and poured into casts.
The melting point of gold
Gold changes its form, i.e. melts from its solid-state into a liquid at 1064°C. Its boiling point can also be obtained at 2856°C. As we can see, these are extremely high temperatures and the gold melting point is usually achieved in specialised industrial facilities. If other metals are already present in the gold, then the temperature required to achieve the melting point of gold will vary. Therefore, 18-carat or 14-carat gold will typically contain a larger percentage of other base metals, causing a variance in the melting point of gold.
The process to arrive at the gold melting point
As discussed above, this industrial process usually requires a furnace to apply the heat in order to execute the process efficiently. The extremely high temperature at which the gold melting point is reached can be generated by a high power furnace. It is important to understand the difference between the words ‘melting point of gold’ and smelting. The process of melting simply converts the metal into a liquid state. In this case, the chemical qualities of the metal remain unchanged. There is simply a change of state. Smelting, on the other hand, is a different process in which impurities contained within the gold are burned off. Therefore, the temperature required to do this may vary from the gold melting point. Once these impurities have been burnt off, the remainder in most cases is almost pure gold.
Other processes that can achieve the melting point of gold
The process of melting gold has been around for thousands of years, long before the invention of high-powered furnaces. How did we melt gold through these years? Well, did you know that the ancient Egyptians used a combination of charcoal along with blowpipes to hit the gold melting point? They were also able to remove impurities from the gold by using this process. For jewellery craftsmen or individuals who want to melt their own gold at home, or operate a small-scale industry, there are propane-powered gold melting kilns available today. Flux can be used in these devices to extract impurities. However, only small amounts of gold can be processed by using these kits.
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At Physical Gold, our experts are happy to help you with queries related to precious metals. We can also advise you on making the best purchases when it comes to gold or silver. Please call us on (020) 7060 9992, or get in touch with us online by visiting our website. We are always happy to help.
Gold is considered to be the most popular precious metal, due to its repository of value. Over thousands of years, nations across the world, kings and queens, governments and their banks have all accepted gold as the principal precious metal. There are other precious metals that exist, a couple of which are more expensive than gold. However, gold continues to enjoy unfettered liquidity across the world.
Gold is widely traded as a commodity and the COMEX gold prices decide the rate at which gold is bought or sold at any given point in time. This is known as the spot price of gold and it is calculated in US dollars per Troy ounce. But, have you ever wondered how is gold formed? Many of us know that it is mined in a few countries across the world. But, more importantly, where does it come from?
Where does gold come from?
It is common knowledge that gold can be obtained from gold mines. However, gold flakes are also available in rivers and streams and certain parts of the sea. It has a yellow metallic colour, which has led to many people calling it the yellow metal. Gold has certain rare properties which include malleability, conductivity, and ductility. It is known as an element with its symbol represented by ‘AU’. Its properties of ductility and conductivity make it attractive to the industry as an electrical conductor. How is gold formed? It is interesting to know that the formation of gold took place long before our planet was formed.
Many scientists believe that the element was formed during collisions between supernovae and neutron stars even before the birth of our solar system. However, during the formation of our planet, gold was deposited in the core of the Earth. Cosmic events that took place over millions of years on Earth, such as the Earth’s collision with asteroids made some of this gold available to us.
Is it possible to synthesise gold?
Yes, in theory, scientists can create gold by bombarding Mercury with radiation. As the decay of mercury takes place, the formation of gold can take place. However, in reality, it is difficult to produce gold through this route. The finite amount of gold available on the Earth needs to be mined and extracted.
Where can we find gold inside the Earth?
As explained earlier, when our planet was formed, heavy elements such as iron, and gold made their way to the core of the planet. However, when the asteroid collisions took place billions of years ago, the layers of our planet were churned. This resulted in large amounts of gold being deposited into the upper layers.
How much gold is there on Earth?
Well, it is difficult to calculate exactly how much gold could be found inside the Earth’s crust and mantle. However, a 2016 survey conducted in the United States revealed that approximately 196,320 tons of gold have been extracted and produced ever since human civilisation started. Gold is an extremely dense metal (19.32 g/cm³) and does not occupy a lot of space. It is estimated that there may be 1,000,000 tons of gold embedded within a kilometre of the Earth’s surface. Of course, the volume of the precious metal inside the mantle and the core of the Earth is unknown but could be a lot more. With advancements in technology, it may be eventually possible to access these deposits of gold as well.
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Physical Gold is a highly reputed precious metal dealer in the UK. Our experts can address all your queries related to precious metals. Call us on (020) 7060 9992 or reach out to us online through our website.
Until 2009, few people, if any, had heard about the virtual currency called Bitcoin. In 2008, this new form of currency, otherwise known as a cryptocurrency was invented. To date, no one knows who created the Bitcoin, but its invention has been attributed to a person or a team of individuals who used the name, Satoshi Nakamoto. The cryptocurrency was formally launched in 2009 and came into the market as open source.
Advantages of Bitcoin
As a cryptocurrency, Bitcoin has certain distinct advantages. It is a decentralised digital currency that does not have any control or governance by the banks of any nation. It is not controlled by the government of any country. The currency operates across a peer-to-peer network, eradicating the need for any third-party or intermediary. All transactions that use this cryptocurrency are verified electronically by network nodes. These transactions are encrypted and stored on a distributed ledger system known as a blockchain.
The blockchain derives its name from the way it operates. It is a chain of blocks, where every block contains a hash code connecting it to the previous block, all the way to the first one, which is known as the genesis block. This ensures that the system cannot be easily hacked into, as it is extremely difficult to alter the information contained across the entire chain. When a Bitcoin transaction happens, the information is sent to this network using purpose-built software applications. At this point in time, the network nodes validate these transactions and write them into the respective ledgers. The information is then broadcast to the other nodes within the system. Apart from data protection, the system also ensures that double-spending is prohibited. To make this happen, every input needs to have a previous unspent output within the blockchain. The first commercial transaction using Bitcoin took place in 2010 when the cryptocurrency was used to pay for two pizzas. At the time, the value of the Bitcoin was very low and the transaction was done for 10,000 Bitcoins.
How are Bitcoins generated?
Bitcoins are created through a process known as mining. It is essentially a service that creates records by using the processing power of computers. This activity maintains the sanctity of the blockchain, ensuring its consistency and completeness. At the same time, the process also ensures the security of the transactions, by making them un-alterable through the use of an SHA-256 cryptographic hash, which links across the blocks through the entire chain. However, every new block must have proof of work (POW), to ensure its acceptance by the entire network.
In the early days, Bitcoin miners used powerful computers known as GPUs (graphics processing unit) for this operation. These computers were faster and more adaptable in creating POW algorithms. However, today mining operations for Bitcoins been taken over by companies and these companies use large data centres, fitted with dedicated, specialised mining hardware. The mining companies generate Bitcoins through this intricate, expensive and energy-intensive process. Despite the complex security process, Bitcoins have been stolen from exchanges. The cryptocurrency has also come under criticism for the gigantic amounts of electricity used by the mining companies, at a time when the entire world wants to conserve energy and move towards green energy.
The legal status of Bitcoin
Due to the decentralised nature of the cryptocurrency, its regulation has been difficult. Since the currency is mainly traded in online exchanges, its use in the early days was fraught with controversy. Bitcoins have certain unprecedented characteristics that no other currency has seen before.
There is no central authority.
There is no central repository server – the cryptocurrency operates through a peer-to-peer network.
Central storage like currency holdings in a bank does not exist. Bitcoins use a distributed ledger system.
The distributed ledger is accessible to everybody, and anyone can store it on their computers.
The administration of the cryptocurrency is also distributed. Its ledger is maintained by a network of Bitcoin miners.
An amazing feature of the system is that anyone can become a miner.
Additions to this distributed ledger system are highly competitive. Any miner can create a new block, and it is impossible to predict who will.
New Bitcoins are generated as a reward for creating a new block. Therefore, anyone within the network can achieve this target. According to the protocol, only 21 million Bitcoins can be created.
New Bitcoin addresses require no approval system for its creation and anyone can create it.
Transactions do not need approval, and a confirmation is generated by the network once the transaction is deemed legitimate.
Several national banks across the world felt threatened by the new autonomy and lack of control presented by Bitcoin. In September 2017, China started the process of imposing a ban on trading in Bitcoins. The ban formally came into effect in February 2018. In the US, warnings were issued about trading and investments in Bitcoins. In July 2018, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in the United States reiterated that any form of trading in cryptocurrencies is speculative and that there could be inherent risks associated with theft from hackers, as well as fraud and misrepresentation. Earlier, similar warnings had been issued by the European Banking Authority, regarding the price volatility of Bitcoins, absence of regulatory structure and the risk of fraud.
Risk of price manipulation
In May 2018, an investigation was launched by the US Justice Department about the possibility of price manipulation. The final price settlement of Bitcoin futures in the US is dependent on four cryptocurrency exchanges. The investigation looked into transaction data on these four exchanges in order to detect any unfair market practices.
History of the Bitcoin price
Bitcoin inventor Satoshi Nakamoto is estimated to have mined close to 1,000,000 Bitcoins, before handing over the controls to the Bitcoin Foundation and retiring from public life. By 2011, Bitcoins started to have parity to internationally accepted currencies. At the time, the Bitcoin price in US dollars was only $ 0.30. In 2011, the average USD to GBP price was 1.60. Therefore, the Bitcoin to GBP conversion was approximately 18p. Some people bought Bitcoins at this price. Imagine how rich they are today! Bitcoin closed in the year 2011, with the Bitcoin to GBP price at £3.29. However, Bitcoin to GBP prices faced extreme volatility at the time, with the Bitcoin to GBP price rising to £19.68 in June that year, before heading into a downward spiral.
The following year, 2012, saw the prices of Bitcoin in GBP rise to around £8.36 at the close of the year. However, volatility continued with the prices falling by as much as 49% to 57% throughout the year, followed by a period of stabilisation. This rollercoaster ride of the Bitcoin in GBP prices kept prudent investors away. However, that year also witnessed the creation of the Bitcoin Foundation. This was done primarily to lend a direction to the development of Bitcoin, leading to renewed hope in the prices of Bitcoin in GBP.
The rise of Bitcoin
2013 was an important year for Bitcoin. The year witnessed the greatest price rise of 1 Bitcoin in GBP. At the start of the year, the value of 1 Bitcoin in GBP was £8.36. However, by the end of the year, the price of 1 Bitcoin in GBP had risen to £484. But, it was also a year in which the cryptocurrency became mired in controversy. In March of the same year, there were problems with the blockchain and the distributed ledger system split into two independent chains for a few hours, before the problem was rectified.
In the same year, the US authorities also seized around 30,000 Bitcoins from an illegal trading site called Silk Road. The authorities also started taking action against Bitcoin exchanges in the US if they had not registered with the appropriate legal authorities. After China prohibited the use of Bitcoins, prices started falling drastically. At the start of 2014, the price of 1 Bitcoin in GBP stood at £484 but reduced to £206 by the end of the year.
From this period of uncertainty, Bitcoins made a slow recovery. By the end of 2015, 1 BTC to GBP conversion price rose to £285. The price continued to rise throughout 2016 and by the beginning of 2017, the price of 1 BTC to GBP had risen to £804. 2017 marked the revival of Bitcoin prices, partly fuelled by a software upgrade on the Bitcoin network. This upgrade, called Segwit, improved prices by around 50%. By July 2017, the price of one BTC to GBP was approximately £2,216. By the end of the year, the price of one BTC to GBP stood at £10,816.
The Chinese ban on Bitcoin trading, which started in February 2018 saw prices plummeting. The Bitcoin to pound price dropped to approximately £4,974 on 5th February 2018. By January 2019, the Bitcoin to pound price was £2,882, down by 72% from the peaks achieved in 2018.
In February 2019, the Quadriga Fintech controversy surfaced, when the company’s founder was reported dead in India. The Canadian cryptocurrency exchange, subsequently filed for bankruptcy, with around $200 million unaccounted for. Despite this market shock, Bitcoin continued to perform well and by June 2019, the Bitcoin to pound price had risen to £10,000. In an act of legitimacy, Intercontinental Exchange, the company that owns the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), started a Bitcoin exchange to trade in its futures.
The COVID-19 pandemic
It would be unbelievable if the global pandemic had not impacted Bitcoin. As the pandemic took hold around the world, BTC to GBP prices fell to approximately £3,225 and below. However, 2020 witnessed a lot of support for the cryptocurrency from financial companies, who moved a percentage of their total assets to Bitcoins. The payment gateway, PayPal also allowed its customers to buy and sell Bitcoin using their payment platform. By November 2020, the BTC to GBP price had recovered and stood at £16,016.
This new BTC to GBP price was at an all-time high, and reinforced the faith of investors, as the cryptocurrency was able to buck its performance, while under pressure from the economic situation caused by the pandemic. The revival of the Bitcoin GBP price witnessed other corporate powerhouses following suit in the support of Bitcoin. These included life insurance companies, who were converting a part of their assets to Bitcoin and the high-tech automobile company Tesla that invested £1.08 billion in Bitcoin. Based on these factors, the Bitcoin GBP price went up to £35,597. Earlier in 2021, the Bitcoin GBP price rose by approximately £3,846 in an hour, when the Bitcoin received an endorsement from Elon Musk, founder of Tesla. With that rise alone, the Bitcoin price GBP reached a price of £28,691.
Current status of the Bitcoin price GBP
The live price of Bitcoin to pounds is a dynamically changing price, just like any other global currency. Most live price charts will update the Bitcoin price GBP within five seconds. After a turbulent start, Bitcoin has now established itself as the most important cryptocurrency, which is in high demand. Due to this, the Bitcoin to pounds price is quite high. However, investors believe that the Bitcoin to pounds price will continue to rise in the future.
From a high of £35,597 on 8 February 2021, the Bitcoin price pounds has already reduced slightly to £34,301 on 12 February 2021. But the Bitcoin price pounds had earlier in the day reached a high of £34,487. So, as an investor, these illustrations should give you an indication of the fluctuation and volatility of the Bitcoin price pounds. Many precious metal investors are now turning to Bitcoin, as there is speculation that it may replace precious metals as a repository of value.
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Our precious metal experts at Physical Gold can help you with the right advice and knowledge when it comes to comparisons between cryptocurrencies and precious metals. Call us today on (020) 7060 9992 or simply get in touch with us online through our website.