Buying Silver Bullion
Buying silver is an excellent way to get started in precious metals investing. Buying silver is easy when you shop with USA Mint. We have an immense inventory and an impeccable reputation. Silver is produced in the form of silver coins, silver bars, and silver rounds from mints and precious metal refiners around the world. Although gold remains the king of precious metals for millions of investors, silver is a quiet hero that many investors turn to for diversity and affordability. For thousands of years, silver bullion has served as a primary monetary metal, but today it is most commonly used as an industrial commodity. As an investment, silver can play an important role in a modern diversified portfolio. Silver prices generally move independent of stocks and can provide a bright spot in your investment portfolio during an economic downturn. You’ll find silver for sale in a wide range of product types that include coins, bars, and rounds. Want to find something a little different for your portfolio? Try flipping through the various silver products available in the robust online catalog at USA Mint.
Silver rounds come in a number of different sizes from 1 gram to 10 ounces, and every size in between. The most commonly traded silver bullion rounds are 1 oz or less. Though not as collectible as some silver coins, silver rounds are minted to an equally high standard with beautifully detailed designs and clean striking. Silver rounds typically sell for a lower premium relative to spot silver price and are an excellent addition to a mixed investment portfolio of Silver. Silver rounds are available primarily from private mints in the United States and around the world. While silver rounds and silver coins have a lot of visual similarities, there are some important differences to understand. Primarily speaking, silver coins have an official face value assigned by a sovereign mint and hold legal tender status. Conversely, silver rounds have no face value, are not struck by sovereign mints, and hold no legal tender status. The benefit this delivers to silver rounds is the ability to strike the rounds to unlimited mintages in the interest of keeping up with the demand for silver among investors and collectors. Silver rounds have bullion versions with unlimited coining or proof options with limited issues to spike interest in unique designs.
You can expect to find various silver round collections at USA Mint, feel free to read more about the following silver rounds available in fractional weights, 1 oz weights, and larger-than-1-oz weights:
- 1 oz Silver Round: One of the most popular options on the market today features the "Indian Head" design. This round contains a full ounce of silver, and the design features an Indian chief with a stunning headdress, with the word Liberty at the top and 13 stars around the edge.
- Fractional Silver Rounds: Unlike most silver coins, silver rounds are available in fractional weights as well as 1 oz weights. In most cases, fractional silver rounds feature representations of historic American coin designs. Available options include the Buffalo Nickel design, Walking Liberty design, and even the Morgan Silver Dollar design.
Not into silver rounds or coins? Buying silver bars is one of the most cost-effective, safest, and easiest ways to own physical silver. Silver bars are the bullion of choice for many investors because they cost less over silver spot price than silver coins. Private mints and a handful of sovereign mints around the globe produce silver bars for sale that have been part of the backbone of private investing for centuries. Silver bars are a lot like silver rounds in many ways. The number of mints/refineries producing them ensures a great deal of variety within the market, while also ensuring there is enough silver to meet the demand of investors and collectors. Additionally, their uniform shape and size mean silver bars are easy to store, count, and transfer. USA Mint sells silver bars produced by Sunshine Mint, PAMP Suisse, RCM, Johnson Matthey, and other respected silver mints. Each silver bar is stamped with its exact silver weight, fineness, and a serial number for added security. Silver bars can have varying designs that range from mint-branded, simple imagery to those which bear some of the most beautiful designs in the world. Like most silver round programs, silver bars are also typically offered with no cap on the refining numbers made available to the public for purchase. Silver bars also come with a variety of different finishes/appearances.
The two primary forms to become familiar with include minted ingots and cast/hand-poured bars:
- Minted ingots: More highly refined than cast/hand-poured silver bars, minted ingots start out as long cast bars that are run through state-of-the-art presses that stamp and cut the bars into specific sizes with precision. These bars have elegant visuals and refined design elements.
- Cast/hand-poured bars: The iconic, classic appearance of a silver bar is one which has been created by simply pouring silver into a cast mold and letting it cool. The cooling process is determined by the mint/refinery, with some opting to let bars cool by air while others speed up the process with cooling tubs of water.
One of the many other benefits of silver bars is the range of weights you’ll find. Silver bars are weighted and marked in both grams and troy ounces, with the decision on how to mark weights dependent upon the mint/refinery in question. USA Mint carries a full range of silver bars weighted from 1 gram up to 5 kilograms (5,000 Grams or 160.75 Troy oz). Still, others are simply marked by their exact troy ounce weight ranging from 1 oz silver bars and 2 oz silver bars up to 25-50 oz silver bars and 100 oz silver bars.
Popular silver bars you’ll find in the USA Mint catalog include the following in-demand series:
- PAMP Suisse Fortuna Bars: Fortuna is the massively popular design collection from PAMP Suisse. Available in gold, platinum, and palladium as well, the Fortuna 1 oz silver bars are widely recognized around the world as a symbol of quality and craftsmanship.
- Geiger Edelmetalle Bars: A famed German refinery, Geiger Edelmetalle has been in business since 1218! Located in southeastern Germany outside of the city of Leipzig, Geiger Edelmetalle has recently released a diverse collection known as the Geiger Original Series of silver bars featuring the latest security enhancements to combat counterfeiting and the famed design of its headquarters at Schloss Guldengossa.
- Monarch Precious Metals: A private American refinery, Monarch Precious Metals takes on approach to refining and one alone: hand-poured, traditional refining. All Monarch Precious Metal silver bars are struck using hand-poured silver, with any and all design elements hand-stamped into the surfaces of the bars.
- Sunshine Minting: Another private American mint, Sunshine Minting not only provides silver bullion blanks for bullion coinage to mints including the United States Mint, it produces its own lineup of silver bars with its famed sunburst design behind an American bald eagle in flight.
- SilverTowne: Located Winchester, Indiana, SilverTowne started in 1949 as a small coin shop and has grown to become one of the biggest private American mints. The company produces both silver bars with its popular Prospector design and silver rounds with historic American coinage designs.
Without question, the highlight of the silver market these days are silver coins. A silver coin can come in a variety of sizes from 1/25 oz to 1 kilo, and every size in between. There are mints and refiners all over the world that create the best unique and valuable silver coins. Whether you are a beginning or experienced collector, you will find a coin that fits your interests. The most common purchases are 1 oz silver coins, often bought by investors and silver collectors alike. Available predominantly from sovereign mints around the globe, with a notable exception being the state-owned Perth Mint of Australia, silver coins hold legal tender status, are assigned a face value in national currencies, and have government-backed purity and weight. Silver coins for sale around the world today are far too numerous to mention in great detail. However, it is worth noting some of the most important coins in the market right now.
Examples include the following coin programs, which are made available each year from their respective mints:
- American Silver Eagle: There is no coin as popular or widely purchased than the American Silver Eagle. Launched in 1986 by the United States Mint, it is the official silver bullion coin of America and features the iconic Walking Liberty design on its obverse face as created in 1916 by Adolph A. Weinman. The highest mintage year for the Silver Eagle was in 2015 when it hit 47 million coins sold in one year.
- Canadian Silver Maple Leaf: The official silver bullion of Canada, the Royal Canadian Mint set an impressive standard when it introduced the Silver Maple Leaf in 1988. Though it debuted after the American Eagle and Chinese Panda coins, it was the first and remains one of the few to use .9999 pure silver content.
- Australian Silver Bullion: The Royal Australian Mint might be the nation’s official sovereign mint, but the Perth Mint is its oldest. Perth Mint coins enjoy legal tender status through the Currency Act of 1965, and the facility is owned by the state government of Western Australia.
- British Silver Bullion: The Royal Mint of England produces some extremely popular silver coins right now. The Silver Britannia is the nation’s official bullion coin and was introduced in 1998 with the iconic image of Britannia. A national symbol in Britain, Britannia watches over the island nation’s shores to defend against invaders.
- Mexican Silver Libertad: Mexico’s official silver bullion issue, the Silver Libertad coin has a design taken from Mexican history that dates back two centuries. First used during Mexico’s revolution against Spain in the 1820s, Winged Victory appeared on Mexican coinage first in the gold Centenario. Today, she is the leading lady in the design of the Mexican Silver Libertad bullion coins from the Mexican Mint.
- Chinese Silver Panda: The Chinese Silver Panda coin is the oldest silver bullion coin issue in the world today. Introduced in 1982 as a proof specimen, since 1989 the Chinese Mint has struck the coins in a bullion version each year. In 2016, the Chinese Silver Panda coins switched weight measurements from Troy ounces to Grams. Another unique facet of the Chinese Panda among these particular silver coins is its use of a new design for the Giant Panda on the coins each year.
Silver Bullion Mints
When you’re shopping for silver online, you’ll run into two different types of mints and refineries producing the silver rounds, silver bars, and silver coins covered above. The majority of silver bars and silver rounds come from private mints and refineries, both in the United States and around the globe. Silver coins are largely the result of work at sovereign mints around the world, as well as the state-owned Perth Mint in Australia. Below is a brief rundown of the private mints and refineries popular in the USA Mint catalog:
- PAMP Suisse
- Sunshine Minting
- Valcambi Suisse
If you’re shopping for silver coins such as the American Silver Eagle, Canadian Silver Maple Leaf, British Silver Britannia, or Chinese Silver Panda, you’ll be purchasing coins that originated from sovereign mints around the globe.
These include the following primary facilities that churn out the vast majority of silver coins:
- United States Mint
- Royal Canadian Mint
- The Royal Mint
- Perth Mint
- Mexican Mint
- Chinese Mint