Chinese Gold Panda

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There are not many gold bullion coin series that can boast the level of fame and international appeal which the Chinese Gold Panda coins enjoy. These globally acclaimed coins come out each year sealed in the Chinese mint's original plastic. The one ounce coins contain 30 pure grams of gold struck in .999 fineness. They come with a legal tender face value denominated at 500 Yuan in the one troy ounce size.


Chinese Gold Panda Background and History

Thanks in part to a long prestigious history that dates back to their launch in 1982, these Chinese Gold Panda bullion issues remain in the front ranks of beloved gold coins. The People's Republic of China issues them in 99.9% fine gold. While the coins were always minted and denominated in partial, whole, or multiple ounce weights, the Chinese mint has recently changed this. As of 2016, they are now striking these coins using the metric system measurements in keeping with the international following of the pieces. The new grams sizes take the place of the troy ounce weights of all prior dates in the coin series. This has caused some confusion with American coin collectors but delighted the European and Asian collecting audiences.

Before the year 2016, the Chinese Gold Panda coins came in one ounce, one-half ounce, one-quarter ounce, one-tenth ounce, and one-twentieth ounce sizes, as well as bigger five ounce, 12 ounce, and kilogram measures. Due to the popularity and demand for these Gold Panda coins, a few different Chinese mint locations strike them. This includes the mints in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Shenyang. Each of these coins is guaranteed for purity and content by the People's Bank of China.

Chinese Gold Panda Physical Characteristics

Coin Design

Whatever sizes the Chinese Gold Panda coins come in, their images are identical each year. The front “obverse” side of the coins portrays the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest found in the Beijing located Temple of Heaven. This distinctive image is a familiar landmark in the Chinese capital. Its picture within an inner ring. Inscribed in the outer ring is the year of the coin, such as 2016, found at the bottom of the rim. The top of the obverse rim contains inscriptions in Chinese. These translate into English to the name of the country which issues them, The People's Republic of China.

The rear side of the coin is known as the “reverse.” What makes the reverse sides of the Chinese Gold Panda coins special is that their design changes somewhat every year. The image is always one of the rare but internationally known and beloved Panda Bears that inhabit the forests of China. These animals are adored around the world because of their innocence, mild temperament, relaxed and natural look, and distinctive colors appearance. These pandas provide the coins with their unique appeal. The 2016 reverse design showcases the panda while it is clinging on to the branch of a tree. In the background are bamboo stalks in a wall facade. The coin's legal tender face value of 500 Yuan is inscribed immediately beneath the panda itself. Part of the bottom and top of the reverse includes an appealing looking pattern of bamboo leaves. In the bottom part of the coin is inscribed the technical specification for the coin as “30 grams Au .999.”


Chinese Gold Panda coins come available in one ounce (30 grams), half ounce (15 grams), quarter ounce (8 grams), tenth ounce (3 grams), and twentieth ounce sizes (1 gram). The mint also produces larger sizes including 5 ounces, 12 ounces, and kilogram weights. Dimensions of the most popular one ounce (30 grams) coins are as follows:

  • Mass: 30 grams
  • Diameter: 32.05 mm
  • Thickness: 2.70 mm
  • Content: 99.9% gold

Chinese Gold Panda Pricing

Chinese Gold Panda bullion coins are legal tender in China. Each coin denomination has its own face value worth, as stated on the coin. The most popular one ounce version is 500 Yuan. The coins can be spent for this sum, but no one does this in practice. This is because the price of these coins is more heavily based on the coins' intrinsic value. Such value is heavily based on the gold spot price and secondarily on available supply and demand.

This intrinsic value makes up the market price. It is market price that determines the coins' value when included in a retirement or investment portfolio. The premium on these coins above the spot price of gold comes from collector and investor demand. It helps to cover distribution and coinage expenses. Such intrinsic value on these coins goes up and down every day alongside the changing price of gold. You can see the daily gold price in real time by going to our homepage.

Can IRA Accounts Contain Chinese Gold Panda Coins?

It is entirely up to the Internal Revenue Service to determine if a particular gold or other precious metals coin is allowed to be included in a self directed IRA. These precious metals IRAs are only allowed to contain coins that meet the purity and collectibility standards of the IRS. Besides this, the government requires that minimum $5,000 dollar amounts of gold bullion be purchased to open such an IRA. Additional purchases can be added for only $1,000 or more. If you have a pre-existing IRA, you can either transfer or roll it over to a precious metals eligible IRA. Once such sanctioned bullion is purchased, it must be stored in a third party depository that the IRS approves. These vaults maintain and safeguard your precious metals.

Chinese Gold Panda coins meet the minimum purity requirements of .995 gold fineness with their 99.9% gold purity. They do not pass muster with the IRS for collectibility status. The Chinese mint is also not considered by the IRS to be an approved foreign mint for IRA coins. Because of these reasons, Chinese Gold Pandas may not be included in precious metals IRA accounts. They are fine investment choices for other types of portfolios. These Gold Panda coins can be purchased from a wide range of reputable coin and bullion dealers around the globe.

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