Royal Canadian Mint Gold Sales Rebound in 2015
Last week, the Royal Canadian Mint (RCM) released their 2015 gold and silver mintages. Canadian Mint gold sales rose 35% in 2015 to 953,000 ounces after falling to less than 800,000 ounces in 2014. Since the financial crisis of 2008 the Canadian Mint has sold over one million ounces of silver from 2009-2011 and in 2012 and averaged over one million ounces since 2008.
2015 was a year in which western retail gold sales rebounded sharply from the multi-year lows the year before. The Central Banks of Russia and China added heavily to their gold reserves last year, but retail buying remained far off the manic levels of 2010-2011. The United States Mint gold sales were up 45% in 2015 over 2014 to over one million ounces. Sales of gold at the Austrian Mint soared 215%, to a record 1.3 million ounces.
The chart below shows the Canadian Mint gold sales since 2007. Gold sales jumped in 2008 and remained elevated through 2015. Canadian Mint silver sales also rose sharply in 2008, but have continued a stunning ascent. Silver sales at the RCM in 2015 were 34,300,000 ounces up 17.5% from the record 29,200,000 ounces sold in 2014 and up 827% since 2007. In contrast, Canadian Mint gold sales have leveled off and are up “just” 242% since 2007.
The Canadian Mint remarked on the spectacular rise in silver sales in its annual report “…many investors have shifted [from gold] to silver as the preferred investment over gold due to its affordability and the safety net provided by industrial demand.”
The Price of Gold in 2015
The low price of gold in 2015 helped drive sales. The price of gold declined steadily through 2015 since reaching an all-time high of about $1900 an ounce in August 2011. Silver, however, fell even harder from its 2011 high price of $50 to about $14 in 2015.
The Canadian Mint sales of 34,300,000 ounces of silver and 953,000 ounces of gold in 2015 resulted in a silver to gold sales ratio of 36 to 1 in 2015.
The Canadian Gold Maple Leaf Coin
The bulk of gold sold by the Royal Canadian Mint is in the form of one ounce Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coins. The Canadian Mint also produces the gold maple leaf coin in 1/20, 1/10, 1/4, 1/2 ounce sizes. The obverse of a one ounce Canadian Gold Maple leaf coin features a portrait of the Queen of England and the inscriptions “Elizabeth” and “50 Dollars”. The reverse of the Canadian Maple Leaf coin boasts an image of a single maple leaf and the inscriptions “CANADA” “Fine Gold 1 oz Or Pur”. The Canadian Silver Maple Lead coin is 99.99% pure gold.
About the Canadian Mint
The Royal Canadian Mint is the national mint of Canada and it produces the general circulation coinage for the nation and for other foreign nations. The RCM also provides other services such as minting gold and silver bullion coins, as well as special edition collector’s edition coins and coin sets. The Canadian Mint also offers precious metals storage services for businesses, assay services to determine and ensure precious metal bullion weight and finess. The Canadian Mint has operated as a refinery since 1911.
This article by BGASC is not, and should not be regarded as, investment advice or as a recommendation regarding any particular course of action.