Sunday, March 31, 2024

War Nickels; What They Are And Why To Search For Them


 Learn all about Henning War Nickels here and why you would keep your eyes peeled for them to add to your coin collection! 

Thursday, March 28, 2024

DON'T Spend This BICENTENNIAL Quarter!



In this video the value of 1976 bicentennial quarters is discussed. Also discussed is the value of some of the different types of some of the most rare and valuable 1976 quarters that have been sold at auction including some popular errors and varieties worth a lot of money!

Monday, March 25, 2024

Coin Collecting Tips for Beginners


Many people begin their coin-collecting journey by finding an interesting coin in their pocket change, inheriting a coin collection or acquiring a few coins by some other means. Other people think they have found a rare and valuable coin and are looking to get rich quick. Regardless of where you start, here are some tips that will ensure you have a long and profitable coin collecting journey.

1.) Start Simple and Small

Unless you are a millionaire and a thousand-dollar mistake won't bother you, you'll want to ease into the hobby and learn the ropes before you make any major purchases. Start with smaller coin purchases and coin sets that are easy to assemble. Take the time to learn about the coins, their history, how to grade them, and coin pricing.

Many great coin collectors started by assembling a set of Lincoln pennies. They are still found in circulation, and most can be purchased for a moderate price at a local coin show, coin shop, or online. If your budget is a little larger, you may want to start with building a collection of Indian Head pennies or collecting a type set of United States coins.

2.) Collect What You Like

Many people ask, "What should I collect?" The short answer is, "Collect what you like!" Select coins or a series of coins that interest you. It may be a fascinating design on the coin, the history behind the coin or a story that is associated with the coin. Use the Internet to research the history of a coin or to learn about its origins. However, be careful if you purchase coins on the Internet. They may be overpriced or counterfeit.

Regardless, if the coin piques your interest you will be more likely to learn about them and that education will help you avoid costly mistakes in your coin collecting journey. The Lincoln penny is rich in history and has some great stories behind some of the coins. Some young collectors collect world coins that have a common theme, such as queens, fish, buildings, flowers, etc. The possibilities are endless and it can be as interesting as you make it. Finally, as you begin your coin collecting journey be careful not to fall into the trap of trying to "making a quick buck." You will meet people and unscrupulous coin dealers that will try to sell you coins at bargain-basement prices. You will soon find out that the old adage of "if it's too good to be true, it probably is" will hold true in this situation. Stick with collecting what you like and purchase your coins from a trusted coin dealer.

3.) Handle Coins Carefully & Store Them Properly
Although coins are made of metal and we tend to think of metal is very tough, the surface of a coin is very delicate and can be damaged easily. Different metals will react differently with the atmosphere around them.
Practicing safe coin storage and handling techniques will protect the value of your coins for generations to come. Handle your coins wearing cotton or latex gloves. If these are not available, then only handle the coin by its edge. Most importantly, never clean a coin! Coin dealers will be able to tell that has been cleaned and it will be considered a "damaged coin." This will greatly reduce its value or possibly make it worthless.

4.) It's Not a Race
Building a solid collection of coins that will appreciate over time is not a race. In fact, most coin collectors who hurry with their purchases end up getting frustrated very quickly and losing money when it comes time to sell their coin collections. Take your time and learn about the particular coins before you purchase them.
Also, don't purchase the first coin that comes along. Wait for the coin that is the quality you are seeking and is being offered at a reasonable price that you are willing to pay. Done right, coin collecting is a hobby that can last a lifetime.

5.) Buy the Book
There is an old adage that states "Buy the book before you buy the coin." People who have sold their coin collections for hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of dollars not only followed these simple rules, but also took the time to learn about the coins they were collecting. The Internet is a great source of information and, unfortunately, misinformation. A great book for the beginner as well as the seasoned collector is The Guide Book of United States Coins, also known as the Red Book. Take the time to read the introductory chapters of this book and gain an education before you jump into the pricing information that it is also known for.

6.) Magazines and Websites
 Because you're reading this article right now, it shows that you are looking for more information about coin collecting. There are popular coins collecting magazines such as: Coin World and Numismatic News. Coin related websites can also be a great source of information but be careful of websites that are just trying to sell you overpriced coins.

7.) Join a Coin Club
One of the best ways to learn more about coins and keep your interest in coin collecting alive is to join a coin club. Many cities and towns across the United States have local coin clubs. A quick Internet search will tell you if one is nearby. The American Numismatic Association (ANA) is the largest organization dedicated to numismatic education in the country. Also, there are various specialty coin clubs that focus on error coins, early American copper coins, Liberty Seated type coins, etc. Regardless of your area of interest or level of expertise, there is a coin club that will meet your needs.

8.) Visit a Coin Show or Coin Shop
Many coins can be purchased online. Unfortunately, this does not give you the opportunity to hold, inspect and compare the coins you are about to purchase. By visiting a coin show or local coin shop, you will be able to evaluate the coin firsthand before you purchase it. Additionally, a trusted coin dealer can provide you with valuable information that will help you with your purchase. Many coin shows also hold mini-seminars that help new collectors hone their coin collecting skills.

9.)Have a Plan
Before you start a coin collection, do some research as to how much money it will take to assemble the collection. If there are some showstopper coins, that doesn't mean you shouldn't start that particular collection. You may have to save up or wait until you have enough disposable income to buy the more expensive coins.

Set up a spreadsheet to list the coins you need to complete that particular collection. Also, list the estimated cost of each coin and what grade you are looking to purchase. As you purchased the coins check them off your list so you don't purchase duplicate coins.

Friday, March 22, 2024

Can You Sell Your Gold Teeth?

We are sure you knew about selling your old gold, silver, and platinum jewelry for cash, but did you know you can sell your gold teeth too? That’s right! The value of your gold teeth is based on the weight and metal. Your gold crowns have more value than you might think.

How Much Is a Gold Tooth Worth?

The value of your gold teeth might surprise you. Dental offices can sell their gold crowns to cash buyers, but usually, they get the bad end of the bargain. You see, gold buyers sometimes go into dentist offices in hopes of purchasing gold teeth for a few hundred dollars, but the value is far higher than they are getting.

Often sellers aren’t educated on the value of gold and cash buyers are giving you a guess estimate of the gold value of the crowns. Some of the crowns might even be 24 karat, which is the purest value of gold.

However, if you choose a random cash buyer without doing your research, you might receive the lowest price for your gold teeth. If you don’t do your research, you are most likely going to get money based on the lowest karat even if your gold teeth are worth more. You can sell your gold teeth, but make sure you understand the value of gold and are working with a reputable company.

Gold teeth can hold a strong value, depending on the percentage of gold. The higher the gold purity, the higher its cash value. If you are an individual who wants to sell your gold teeth or a dentist’s office looking to get rid of dental scraps, you can get your estimate today.

Ask us today! Martinez Coin And Jewelry Exchange would love to answer your questions regarding your gold tooth exchange! 

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Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Circulating Coins: Making Money


This short series videos show us how the United States Mint makes circulating coins.

Saturday, March 16, 2024

What Is A Panda?


Chinese Silver Pandas, which feature the adorable bear endemic to the region, are a popular choice among investors and collectors of international bullion coins. The history of the Silver Panda has inconsistent beginnings, but it has since settled into a position of worldwide acclaim as high-quality and beautifully designed silver bullion.

The obverse of the Silver Panda is redesigned each year, but always features a panda bear. The panda is generally depicted in its natural habitat among a forest of bamboo shoots. It is worth noting that the Chinese panda is also available as a gold coin.

The Taoist Temple of Heaven of Beijing stands on the Silver Panda’s reverse. This temple was completed in 1420 during the Ming Dynasty. Its main purpose was to provide a sanctuary for Chinese royalty and other elites to worship. While the panda on the obverse has changed many times, the Temple design has largely remained the same (with only a slight alteration in 1987 to accommodate a weight and purity change in the coin).

Early Production

The first Silver Panda was released with a proof finish in 1983, following the success of the Chinese Gold Panda that was released the previous year. From 1983 to 1985, Silver Pandas weighed less than an ounce and contained only .900 fine silver, which is less than most standard bullion coins. No Silver Pandas were produced in 1986.

In 1987, the weight and purity of Silver Pandas were adjusted to meet customer demand and expectations. For many years from 1987, each Panda weighed one troy ounce and consisted of .999 fine silver. No Silver Pandas were produced in 1988. The lack of production in 1986 and 1988 is likely attributed to the mint focusing on other products with a higher priority at the time.

In 1989, Silver Pandas with a BU finish were released. It was also this year that a “P” was placed on the obverse of proof Silver Pandas.

Growing Popularity

By the mid-1990s, Silver Pandas began getting a new panda design each year. This greatly pleased many collectors who wanted to add each loveable bear to their bullion portfolios. However, the Chinese Mint kept the same panda design for two consecutive years in 2001 and 2002. After protests from loyal consumers, new annual panda designs resumed in 2003 and continue to this day.

In 2016, Silver Pandas were switched from troy ounces to grams because the metric system appealed to more international consumers. While not exactly the same weight, the one troy ounce Panda was replaced by the 30 gram Panda.

Minting History

From the Silver Panda’s debut until 1989, the coins were manufactured solely in Shanghai. As the coins grew more popular, it was clear that the mintage quantities had to be increased. In 1990, Silver Pandas were minted in both Shanghai and Shenyang. A third minting location of Shenzhen was added in 1999. Silver Pandas are now minted in Beijing as well, marking four regular minting locations across the country.

In 1998, a one kilo silver coin was added to the series and exactly 1,988 were produced that year. 1,999 one kilo coins were produced in 1999 and 2,000 were produced in 2000. Production quantities were then capped until 2003. From 2003 to the present, 4,000 one kilo silver coins have been produced each year.

Chinese Silver Pandas do not carry mintmarks even though there are multiple mint locations. Having these coins produced at various mints sometimes results in slight variations on the coins, which instantly become treasures for collectors.

Silver Pandas are minted in relatively low quantities each year, especially when compared to the Chinese population as a whole. Granted, not all Chinese citizens will buy Silver Pandas, so plenty are sold abroad. If you intend to invest in Silver Pandas, don’t miss your chance to own each year’s unique design. The iconic bears have captured the hearts of many, while providing immense value to your precious metals portfolio.

Why Should I Invest in the Silver Panda?

The Chinese silver Panda is now one of the most coveted coins among silver bullion investors and coin enthusiasts. Because each coin consists of .999 fine silver, and is minted and guaranteed by a sovereign government, the Silver Panda may be included in a self-directed precious metals IRA.

Also, limited mintages, and design anomalies between minting locations make the Silver Panda high sought for by coin collectors.

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Wednesday, March 13, 2024

What Is A Swan?

What Is an Australian Swan Coin?

Released annually from The Perth Mint, Australian Swan coins are a popular choice among investors and collectors. These handsome coins are minted in Silver and Gold versions and are modern bullion favorites, attracting buyers from all over the world. The obverse of the coin displays a bust portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. The reverse displays an annually refreshed depiction of the stately Swan.

Australian Swan coins have remained a popular choice since their release in 2017, which can be attributed to their excellent purity and quality craftsmanship. Swans are produced in limited mintages and bear collectible design nuances, making each coin a coveted investment.

Each year, the Swan is depicted in a new light, with designs lauded for their stunning details. The annual design is produced in Silver and Gold, so buyers can enjoy each year’s reimagined swan portrayal on their favorite Precious Metal.

Did you know? The Perth Mint’s inaugural release of the 1 oz Silver Swan coin sold out worldwide in less than two days. Learn more about The Perth Mint, Australia’s oldest operating mint.

How Much Are Australian Swan Coins Worth?

Australian Swan coins are simultaneously bullion items, collectibles and legal tender. Consequently, Swans carry a face value on the obverse and boast an impression of the exemplary purity content on the reverse. These sovereign coins are backed by the Australian government for their face values. However, from a bullion perspective, the worth fluctuates with the market value of Precious Metals.

Coins that have been slabbed and graded offer additional value retention. APMEX offers MS70 and PR70 certified slabbed Australian Swan coins.

Gold Australian Swan Coin Basics

Gold Australian Swan coins boast a .9999 fine Gold content. Gold Swans are offered in a 1 oz size and are minted in various finishes, including brilliant uncirculated and proof. The face value of the 1 oz size Gold Swan coin is AU$100.

All Swan releases are limited mintage items. However, 1 oz proof Gold Swans are especially desirable. One hundred eighty-eight are produced yearly, a particularly low mintage. These pieces are minted in a stunning high-relief finish.

Silver Australian Swan Coin Basics

Silver Australian Swan coins are minted in .9999 fine Silver and come in two sizes: 1 oz and 5 oz. A variety of finishes are available as well, including brilliant uncirculated and proof. The face value of the 1 oz Silver Swan coin is AU$1, and the 5 oz version is AU$8.

Australian Swan coins have historically been offered in limited mintages. However, 5 oz high relief finish Silver proof Swans are particularly desirable because only 500 are produced each year.

Did you know? Perth, the capital city of Western Australia, is nestled along the Swan River. The river has inspired the Australian city for ages and has been home to the renowned Perth Mint since 1829. Homage is paid to the graceful Swan on The Perth Mint’s swan-centric logo. The flag of Western Australia also boldly features the elegant creature. The significance of The Perth Mint’s Swan coin design becomes apparent when one reviews the history of the storied city.

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Sunday, March 10, 2024

What Is A Krugerrand?

Krugerrands are gold bullion coins minted in South Africa. The Krugerrand was first minted in 1967, a co-production of the South African Mint and the Rand Refinery, a precious metals refining company.

The coin’s name is derived from the name, Paul Kruger, and the South African rand, the basic unit of currency in South Africa. Paul Kruger was the first Boer President of the country, serving from 1883 to the turn of the century in 1900. Thus, “Kruger” and “rand” combine to create the Krugerrand.

The coin features a depiction of President Kruger on the obverse side and a depiction of the South African Republic’s national animal – the springbok – on the reverse side. The word “Krugerrand” is engraved on the reverse side, above the springbok. Below the springbok image, the amount and purity of the coin’s gold content are inscribed. The obverse side is engraved with “Suid Afrika – South Africa.” Krugerrands are legal tender in South Africa.

History of the Krugerrand

The Krugerrand coin was specifically produced to offer an easy means for private investors to access the gold bullion market. For the purpose it was created, the Krugerrand exceeded expectations and was wildly successful. It quickly became the most popular gold bullion coin worldwide, and by the end of the 1970s, the term “Krugerrands” was largely synonymous with “gold coins.” If someone said they invested in Krugerrands, it was taken to mean they collected gold coins.

Krugerrands became especially popular with U.S. gold investors, as the commodities markets enjoyed a major bull market during the 1970s. The price of gold soared to over $2,200 an ounce by the end of the decade – a price level it would not approach again until 2011. U.S. investors bought tens of millions of Krugerrands. At that time, no U.S. bullion coins were being minted. The American Eagle gold and silver bullion coins did not arrive on the scene until 1986.

The Krugerrand’s Success

The Krugerrand’s success spawned the minting of gold bullion coins in several other countries as well. Canada began minting its gold “Maple Leaf” coins in 1979, and China’s one-ounce gold “Panda” followed in 1982.

The demand level for Krugerrands varied widely over the years. It rose steadily throughout the 1970s, declined through the late 1980s and into the 1990s, then began to increase again around 1999. Annual production levels reached as low as 24,000 and as high as six million.

By 2018, there were more than 50 million ounces of gold Krugerrands produced. In contrast, while gold American Eagle one-ounce bullion coins also became immensely popular, only about 20 million ounces of them were produced since their original 1986 minting. At one time, the South African Krugerrands made up roughly 90% of all the gold bullion coins in existence worldwide.

Originally, there was just the one-ounce gold Krugerrand coin. The mintings now to include the production of 1/2-ounce, 1/4-ounce, and 1/10-ounce coins.

In addition to the coins being sold outright, Krugerrands are also traded on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE).

How Krugerrands Are Made

Krugerrands were designed to be durable. Therefore, they are comprised of an alloy of gold and copper. Because the coins are only 91.67% gold (the remainder, 8.33%, copper) – 22 karats – they are manufactured to weigh a bit more than one ounce total (1 and 1/11 ounces) so that they contain one full troy ounce of gold.

The partially copper composition makes Krugerrands more resistant to scratches compared to gold bullion coins that are pure gold, which is one reason for the desirability and popularity of the Krugerrand over many other gold bullion coins. The copper component also gives Krugerrands a somewhat orange-hued tint compared to bullion coins that are pure gold.

The South African Reserve Bank limits the exportation of Krugerrands. Visitors to South Africa may take no more than 15 coins maximum with them when they leave the country.

Continue learning about Krugerrands here...

Thursday, March 7, 2024

History of Palladium Prices


It is important to know the multiple factors that impact the price of Palladium when investing in the metal. You’ll want to explore what key factors influence the price of Palladium. One world event can send the Palladium price soaring or slipping. Not all economic news affects all Precious Metals prices the same way.

Take, for example, the 2015 Volkswagen diesel car recall. The German company had implemented software that tricked emissions tests, making it appear that their cars were more environmentally friendly than they actually were. This created a public relations nightmare and Volkswagen has had to take serious steps to repair its reputation.

This situation, however, impacted the value of Palladium and increased its prices above Platinum price for the first time in over a decade.

Palladium and Platinum are key components of catalytic converters in cars. These converters help transform gas into less harmful substances. But only Platinum is used in diesel car catalytic converters.

Palladium, on the other hand, is typically used in gasoline cars. As a result, this one event potentially boosted the use of the metal in more gas-fueled vehicle production and increased Palladium price in higher demand. And, of course, the potentially lower demand for Platinum with possibly fewer diesel cars on the road could affect Precious Metal’s price.

Palladium is also used in jewelry, watch bearings, scientific instruments and electroplating. Since this metal has such high industrial use, this limits its supply even more.

Palladium Prices Depend on the Politics of Supply

When considering the current price for Palladium, you’ll want to look at the historical prices, then consider other factors that have and will continue to influence the price. Supply and demand are both key factors. It is important to note that roughly 80% of the world’s Palladium comes from South Africa and Russia, making Palladium prices contingent on the political and economic events in those two countries.

It is helpful to take the time to understand Palladium’s supply chain and how that consequently impacts Palladium’s price. For example, in the last decade, South African Platinum mines have become a flashpoint for social unrest regarding miners’ workers’ rights and earning fair wages.

The longest miners’ strike was in 2014 when 70,000 workers from three major Platinum mines—Impala Platinum, Anglo American Platinum and Lonmin Platinum Mines—in Rustenburg refused to work for five months. Since Palladium is a Platinum group metal, this resulted in both Platinum prices and Palladium prices rising in 2014.

This strike also caused a 1.3% GDP reduction in South Africa’s first quarter of the year. The South African strike caused both Platinum prices and Palladium prices to skyrocket—with Palladium prices reaching a three-year high—because the country’s Platinum and Palladium output decreased by 60%. It was estimated that around 5,000 ounces of Palladium were lost per day due to the strike. South Africa plays a vital role in Platinum and Palladium mining because they produce 40% of the Precious Metals’ global supply.

During the South African strike in the spring of 2014, the other leading producer of Palladium, Russia, was facing increased backlash from the United States and other European countries for its de facto annexation of Crimea. As tensions rise between Ukraine and Russia, so does anxiety around how this will affect Palladium prices.

Russia’s lack of transparency about the amount of Palladium they have in their country’s stockpile has driven prices up in the past twenty years. At the turn of the century Palladium prices hit a record high of $1,100 per Troy ounce due to a boom in electronic use, but also because Russia was hinting that they weren’t going to sell any of their Palladium stockpiles.

During this panic, Ford and General Motors bought the high-priced stock thinking that Russia would not sell and there would be a shorter supply of the metal. Unfortunately for them, Russia did end up selling and buying the overpriced Palladium cost the companies thousands if not millions. Since 2010, the world has seen a shorter supply of Palladium, resulting in unprecedented price increases.

Growing concerns over climate change have pushed legislators worldwide to pass more drastic regulations to curb greenhouse gas emissions. As harsher restrictions have been placed on automotive emissions, the demand for Palladium and Platinum has risen to meet automobile production. 

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Monday, March 4, 2024

What Is A Troy Ounce?

One troy ounce is 31.1034768 grams, or 0.0311034768 kilograms.

The troy ounce is used in the weighing and pricing of the precious metals : gold, platinum, palladium and silver.

A troy ounce is equivalent to 480 grains. A grain is 0.06479891 grams.

Troy ounce confusion

A troy ounce is not the same as an imperial or avoirdupois ounce.

A troy pound is similarly non-standard. It comprises 12 troy ounces - not the traditional 16.

For extra confusion 1 kg is 32.1507466 troy ounces, co-incidentally close to the g/ozt conversion factor of 31.1034768.

A source of regular confusion and error is people dividing a kg price by 31.1034768 and hoping to get the price per troy ounce. The result, though attractively close to the right answer, is always wrong. In fact they should multiply the per kilogram price by the kg per troy ounce figure (0.0311034768) to effect the correct conversion from a per kilogram price to a per troy ounce price.

By the same reasoning a per troy ounce price of gold should be divided by kg per troy ounce figure (0.0311034768) to effect the correct conversion to a per kilogram price.

Troy ounce origin

Originally coming from the French town of Troyes the troy system was the basis for the medieval British system of coinage introduced by Henry II of England.

At this time much of English administration was based on French systems. The penny was literally one pennyweight of silver. One pound sterling was equal to twenty shillings, with each shilling equal to twelve pennies. Thus, one pound sterling equals 240 pennyweights, or one troy pound of sterling silver.

The Troy system was adopted by the U.S. Mint for the regulation of coinage in 1828.

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Friday, March 1, 2024

History of Platinum Prices

What is Platinum?

Platinum is a dense, malleable metal represented by the symbol Pt and atomic number 78. This metal is ductile, corrosion-resistant, and highly unreactive with a very high melting point. The name comes from the Spanish term “platina,” which translates into little silver. According to historians, South Americans discovered this rare, valuable, metal before the Europeans arrived. The largest producers of platinum are South Africa and Russia. A small amount of this gray-white metal is produced every year because it is not commonly found in the Earth's crust.

Common Uses for Platinum

Investors buy platinum coins and Bullion by the gram or ounce. And this metal is quite desirable for jewelry. For generations, platinum has been used to make ornaments, rings, watches, and other jewelry. An enduring platinum wedding ring represents forever to a bride and groom. However, the largest application of platinum is manufacturing catalytic converters in vehicular emission control units. Almost half the platinum produced is used by this industry. Also, spark plugs, dental work, medical instruments, and cancer medications are made with platinum.

A Brief History of Platinum

A number of traces of platinum were found in the gold used in hieroglyphics and ancient Egyptian tombs dating back to 1200 BC. It is believed early Egyptians did not realize there was platinum in their gold. Pre-Columbian Americans in modern-day Ecuador used platinum alloy to make artifacts. In 1557, the first European reference to platinum was made by Italian humanist Julius Caesar Scaliger. He referred to it as an unknown noble metal found between Mexico and Darien. The Spanish forbade the adulteration of gold with platinum impurities, and often it was thrown away.

The official discovery of platinum occurred in the 1700s and was credited to Antonio de Ulloa. The metal was found to be neither calcinable nor separable. Chemists across Europe started to study the unusual metal with a very high melting point. Henrik Teofilus Scheffer published a detailed scientific description of platinum in 1752. He referred to platinum as “white gold” and described it as less pliable than gold with a similar corrosion resistance. A major news moment in history occurred in 2007 when Gerhard Ertl won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for determining the molecular mechanisms of the catalytic oxidation of carbon monoxide over platinum. The result of his findings and scientific information has led to other applications and options for platinum.

Investing in Platinum

Platinum bullion has the ISO currency code of XPT. Ingots, coins, and bars are traded or collected, similar to gold and silver bullion. The price of platinum is more volatile than gold prices or silver prices. In fact, the price chart of platinum varies widely. For example, platinum plummeted to a loss of almost 2/3 of its value in the year 2008. The price of platinum tends to be double the price of gold during times of sustained economic growth and stability. When economic times are uncertain, the price can fall below the price of gold because of reduced industrial demand, buying, and investing. Since 2011, the stock level of platinum decreased as mining supplies fell and recycling rates slowed down. Since 2015, platinum's daily benchmark in London (LBMA is a center of the world's bullion market) fell below the price of gold per ounce and has remained there since. Since mid-May, 2021, platinum has predominantly remained under $1200 per ounce, closer to $1000 per ounce.

Smart buyers and sellers can reference the website, the NASDAQ, world currencies, and the stock exchange in real-time for up-to-the-minute data. Trying to forecast pricing in the days ahead is nearly impossible.

What Influences the Price of Platinum?

On the supply side, platinum is an extremely scarce metal. It is more than twenty times rarer than gold. It is so rare that all of the platinum ever mined could fit into a room measuring 25 feet by 25 feet.

The primary driver of platinum demand is the automotive industry. Platinum, along with its sister metal palladium, is used in catalytic converters.

The platinum group metals also see some jewelry and investment demand. Like other precious metals, platinum is minted into coins, rounds, and bars.

Is the Spot Platinum Price the Price I Pay When I Buy from a Dealer?

A dealer will charge a premium above the spot price of platinum for platinum coins and bars. The premium reflects the costs associated with minting, acquiring, and storing products, plus the dealer's profit.

The premium may also rise or fall along with retail demand for scarce products. When demand is soft, premiums may fall, especially on secondary market products that are being re-sold. When strong demand strains dealer inventories, premiums may rise. Premiums on platinum Eagles in particular could rise if the U.S. Mint discontinues production of them again (which it did from 2008 to 2013).

Do Mining Operations Affect the Price of Platinum?

Platinum supplies are highly dependent on mining operations out of a single country, South Africa. In fact, it provides more than 70% of the world's platinum supply.

However, the South African mining industry is contracting due to adverse market conditions, energy concerns, water shortages, labor difficulties, infrastructure deterioration, and rising political risk. In recent years, the socialist-run country has moved toward seizing white-owned farms and businesses. That, in turn, has deterred much-needed investment in mine development.

While the mining industry struggles may not have an immediate impact on platinum prices, they do portend lower levels of production down the road. That will ultimately put upward pressure on spot prices and ask prices.

Are Platinum Prices Manipulated?

In recent years, rogue traders at large global financial institutions including Deutsche Bank and JPMorgan Chase, have been caught manipulating gold and silver markets. The platinum market doesn't attract as much attention from people, but it is by no means free from the forces of price manipulation.

Because platinum futures are thinly traded compared to other metals, platinum is susceptible to market rigging schemes by smaller players. And since automakers are the biggest buyers of platinum, a decision by a single car company to either load up on platinum or unload some of its positions could have an outsized market impact.

The Prestige of Platinum

The prestige of platinum continues despite what's happening with its actual market value. The metal's use in jewelry is highlighted in ads featured in luxury publications. Minute surface scratches, referred to as patina, are spotlighted by marketers to try to enhance the value of platinum products. High-end watchmakers use platinum for their limited-edition watch series including Rolex, A. Lang & Sohne, Patek Philippe, Hermes, Breitling, Arnold & Son, Bulgari, and Vacheron Constantin.

Platinum is also associated with wealth and exclusivity. A platinum credit card typically offers greater privileges than a gold one. The highest awards are referred to as platinum awards, ranking above bronze, silver, and gold but generally below diamond. Platinum is certainly worth more than the most common gemstone. The frame of the Crown of Queen Elizabeth, also known as The Queen Mother’s Crown, which was manufactured for her coronation, is made of platinum. Plus, platinum secures all the famous diamonds in the world, including Hope and Jonker I.

Rare Facts About a Rare Metal

There are a few interesting, little-known, facts about this rare metal. With rarity in mind, it is believed meteorites and the moon have a higher percentage of platinum than Earth. Louis XVI of France was so impressed with the scarcity of platinum, that he deemed it “the only metal fit for a king.” When an album sells one million copies, it is referred to as a platinum album in the music industry.

Platinum is also precious to many patients using dental crowns, pacemakers, and other equipment in the human body because this metal resists corrosion from body fluids and functions. Regardless of the exact reasons for the platinum spot price today, this metal is always perceived as valuable to people around the world. 

Because platinum price varies, a wise investor works with professionals to buy and sell at the right time. Money Metals Exchange provides Platinum spot prices, Live & Historical: Platinum Price - Money Metals Exchange.

Investors respect Money Metal Exchange as a trustworthy resource for precious metals. Safeguard your assets without paying pricey middleman markups or dealing with bait-and-switch sales tactics. Self-reliable investors recognize the value of buying platinum and other precious investment metals from Money Metal Exchange. Contact us today to find out more about platinum price and how you can safeguard your assets from the devaluing dollar.

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