The end of the gold market off-season: coins market review


July is typically the last month in the slow season for the gold market, and week-on-week sales of American Eagle coins have exemplified this, recently showing an 80% increase emerging from the summer break. There has also been interesting activity in particular areas of the Chinese coins markets, with prices sharply rising and then quickly coming back down. The hot deals are centred around coins with low mintage figures, and those that feature the more impressive and intriguing themes and designs. Don’t let the nature of the gold market deter you, though. Despite the fact that it’s currently a bear market, it’s still worth looking at buying gold coins at this time, given their suitability as a defensive investment.

At the moment, the best opportunities are focused around the older of the newly issued coins – that is, those issued after 2013, but not the very latest 2014 coins. These older new coins are selling like hotcakes. Among them, pieces featuring famous scenery, the Zodiac animals, and spaceflight are the market’s bestsellers.

These coins seemed to have followed a pattern typified by a surge in price just after their release, and then falling back to lower levels soon after the hype has died down. During this ebb would be a great time to buy for a long term investment. For example, the price for the Mt. Emei gold and silver coin sets, peaking at 6800 yuan, descended to about 4500 yuan by the end of July. Similarly, the Moon Landing gold and silver coin sets enjoyed a high of 7800 yuan, only to land with a bit of a bump, currently selling around 6600 yuan. The hype around the July release of the Xinjiang Construction and Production Corps 60th Anniversary sets seems to have died really rather quickly. Prices peaked at 5800, but are already down as low as 5100 – surprising, given that this set has only just hit the market.

Go for the 2013-2014 coins with mintages that are low in comparison to similar coin types from the last three years. Their long-term investment value is relatively high. It’s worth considering the 5 oz and 1 kg large-scale silver coins with elaborate decoration and unique designs; or gold coins issued in the last 12 months with similar themes which should gradually appreciate over time.