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Among the most recognizable precious metals coin series in the world, Canadian Maple Leafs are a favorite of collectors and investors. The Platinum Maple Leaf has not enjoyed the continued annual production of the Silver Maple Leaf or Gold Maple Leaf series, making them a rare and valuable find. They are still products of the Royal Canadian Mint and their quality is still guaranteed by the Canadian government.
Development, Introduction and History
Canadian Platinum Maple Leafs were introduced along with Silver Maple Leafs in 1988 following the overwhelming success of the Gold Maple Leaf series. The production of Platinum Maple Leafs has been less consistent than with other Maple Leaf coins in both design and annual mintage.
During the first two years of production, Platinum Maple Leafs were offered in four weight denominations and bore the image of a younger Queen Elizabeth II. From 1990-2002, the image was changed to show a 64-year old Queen.
In 1993, a fifth weight denomination (1/20 troy oz.) was introduced, and only in 1994 a sixth was added (1/15 troy oz.) before reverting back to five sizes. After 2001, normal production of Platinum Maple Leafs was halted.
There were a total of 500 sets of special, holographic Platinum Maple Leafs minted in 2002.
No more Platinum Maple Leafs were produced until 2009, when a limited number of only 1 troy oz. coins was issued, this time depicting a 79-year old Elizabeth II.
Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf Characteristics
The front, or “obverse” design of a Platinum Maple Leaf coin features an image of Queen Elizabeth II, whose image appears on more types of modern national bullion coins than any other person.
There are three different versions of the British Monarch’s profile (young, mature and old) depending on the year of mintage. That year is displayed underneath her profile, and the name ELIZABETH II stretches across the top boundary.
The rear, or “reverse”, side contains one of the most recognizable images in the world of bullion, as well as the official national symbol of Canada: the Maple Leaf. The name CANADA lines the top of the reverse, along with the numbers 9995 on either side of the leaf image (depicting the .9995 fineness). Along the bottom stretches FINE PLATINUM and 1 OZ PLATINE PUR.
Altogether, Platinum Maple Leafs have been offered in six weight denominations: 1/20 oz., 1/15 oz., 1/10 oz., 1/4 oz., 1/2 oz. and 1 oz.
If you are looking to purchase Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coins, the 1 oz. variety is by far the most common and marketed.
1 troy ounce Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coin
- Weight: 31.103 g
- Diameter: 30.00 mm
- Thickness: 2.62 mm
- Face Value: $50 Canadian
Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf Pricing
Each Canadian Maple Leaf coin carries a face value, or its transactional value when used as a currency in Canada. This value is set by the Canadian government.
While technically legal tender, these values are largely symbolic; the actual value of Platinum Maple Leafs is typically far greater than the listed face value.
This is because face value is completely separate from a coin’s market value. The market value of Platinum Maple Leaf coins are primarily determined from the spot price of platinum.
Platinum prices fluctuate daily, so the market prices for Canadian Platinum Maple Leafs will fluctuate daily as well. You can check out our home page for live metals pricing.
Adding Canadian Maple Leaf Bullion Coins to an IRA
All Canadian Platinum Maple Leafs are eligible to be placed inside of a self-directed IRA.
By placing real, physical platinum inside of an IRA, investors add diversification to their portfolio that is independent of the fluctuations of stocks and bonds. Platinum is far more scarce than gold or silver, and platinum bullion is becoming more liquid as investors continue to recognize the value of this special metal.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows specific types of IRAs to carry gold, silver platinum and palladium bullion in a portfolio. Sometimes referred to as a “precious metals IRA”, only IRS-approved bullion – such as the Platinum Maple Leaf coin – can be added to these investment vehicles.
Investors must make a minimum initial purchase of $5,000 of approved metals in order to establish a precious metals IRA. Each subsequent purchase must be at least $1,000. Additionally, any purchase of investment bullion for an IRA is required to be transferred to, and held within, an approved precious metals depository. These depositories are responsible for the safety and maintenance of the metals until a distribution is made.
To be IRS-approved, bullion coins and bars must meet minimum purity requirements in order to be included in an IRA. All Canadian Maple Leafs meet these requirements, and their quality is guaranteed by the Royal Canadian Mint.
Those with existing IRAs have the option of transferring or rolling over funds into a precious metals IRA.
Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf bullion coins are available for purchase directly from the Royal Canadian Mint through their official website. International shipping may result in extra fees as your coins pass through customs. Additionally, collectors and investors can buy from dealers around the world, such as the American Precious Metals Exchange (APMEX).
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