Ask: The price at which a precious metal is sold to a customer.
AU – Almost Uncirculated: A high quality, near mint condition coin that will look perfect on the surface, but looking closely at the highest points on the coin you can see slight visible signs of wear. These coins may be secondary market, but are still in near mint condition.
Assay: A test to determine the purity and weight of a precious metal.
Bid: The price at which precious metals are bought back from a customer.
BU – Brilliant Uncirculated: A high quality, mint condition coin that has never been distributed for public use
Bullion: Precious metal products valued primarily for their precious metal content and not their rarity, collectability, and condition (numismatic value).
Commission: A charge added to an order by a precious metals trader. Heartland Precious Metal will never charge commission for any orders.
Common Date: Common Date coins are randomly selected coins from currently available in-house stock of a given product.
Face Value: The nominal monetary value of an investment coin, which may not correspond with the value of its metal content. For example, the face value of a one-ounce American Gold Eagle is $50, but the spot price of one ounce of gold is many times that amount.
Fiat Money: Money which derives its value from government regulation or law, and is not supported by a precious metal commodity. All national currencies are currently considered fiat money.
Fine Weight: The weight of the precious metal content of a coin. This may not correspond with its actual total weight, which includes the weight of the alloying metals.
Fineness: The purity of the precious metals used in the minting of a coin. This is measured in parts per 1,000 so a coin with .999 fineness is 99.9% pure.
Gold: A yellow precious metal used as a store of value throughout history. Malleable and resistant to tarnish and oxidation, gold has been used as money, and in jewelry and manufacturing, for ages.
Gold/Silver Ratio: The number of ounces of silver required to buy an ounce of gold at the current market price.
Grading Service: An independent third-party company that evaluates (grades) bullion and numismatic coins . The Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) and Numismatic Guarantee Corporation (NGC) are the foremost grading authorities in the United States.
Intrinsic Value: The true market value of precious metals that a coin or bar contains as opposed to its face value.
Junk Silver: U.S. 90% silver coins minted before 1965. They have since been removed from circulation and are valued for their silver content alone. Because these coins have been in circulation and have been widely handled, they are often dirty or tarnished, hence the name “junk silver.”
Legal Tender: Payment recognized by law as valid for meeting financial obligations and the discharge of debts.
Liquidity: The ease with which a precious metal can be converted into cash. As a rule of thumb, bullion products are more liquid than numismatic products.
Luster: The surface brilliance of an uncirculated coin.
Market Value: The price at which a precious metals product trades as indicated by the metal’s spot price.
Mint: A place where a precious metal product is produced. There are both private mints and mints with state authority.
Numismatic Coins: Coins with value that is based on their rarity, collectability, and condition more than simply for their precious metal content.
Obverse: The front side of a coin
Offer: The price at which a dealer offers to sell a commodity, such as precious metals. This is the same as the ask price and the opposite of the bid price.
Palladium: A rare and lustrous silvery-white metal from the same elemental family as platinum. Numerous industrial applications and limited supply help it attract considerable investment interest.
Planchet: A plain metal disk from which a precious metal coin is made.
Platinum: A dense, malleable, gray-white precious metal. Its scarcity and wide use in industry makes it a valuable and important precious metal commodity.
Premium: The amount charged above a coin’s or bar’s spot price . The premium includes the expense of distribution, manufacturing, and dealer costs. Numismatic coins may have an additional premium based on numismatic value and rarity.
Proof: Coins not intended for circulation struck using specially polished dies and planchets.
Random Date: Random Date coins are randomly selected coins from currently available in-house stock of a given product.
Reverse: The back side of a coin.
Silver: A soft, white, lustrous metal. Silver possesses the highest electrical conductivity of any element, and the highest thermal conductivity and reflectivity of any metal. While silver has long been valued as a precious metal, it is also used:
- In a wide array of industries
- In high-value tableware (hence the term silverware)
- As an investment in the form of coins or bullion
Spot: The market value of a precious metal product at a given point in time.
Spread: The difference between the bid price and the ask price.
Troy Ounce: A unit of imperial measure commonly used to gauge the mass of precious metals. One troy ounce is currently defined as:
- Exactly 0.0311034768 kg or 31.1034768 g.
- Approximately 1.09714 oz.
There are 12 troy ounces in a troy pound, and 14.5833 troy ounces in a pound.
Uncirculated: A coin that has been released to the public but not intended for general circulation, often referred to as Brilliant Uncirculated.
Yield: The annual return on an investment, typically expressed as a percentage.