The Australian Gold Kangaroo coin is a 1-troy ounce gold coin. These collectible gold coins change every year to feature a different depiction of a kangaroo, the iconic Australian animal. It’s a government-backed coin and is official Australian currency. Coin collectors and people around the world who love wildlife collect this 1-ounce gold coin both for its novelty and its monetary value. While the Australian Nugget/Kangaroo Gold Bullion Coin series features a wide variety of coin options, the 1-ounce Gold Kangaroo coin is by far the most popular option for the world’s community of gold bullion coin collectors.
This iconic coin series represents Australia’s history as a mining country with domestic gold resources. It is one of two popular gold coin series minted by Perth Mint, the other being Lunar Gold Bullion coins.
Australian Gold Kangaroo coins first became available in 1987. They were initially created by the Australia government-owned organization, Gold Corporation, and the coin has been released by the same entity, also known as Perth Mint, ever since. The Perth Mint was first established as a branch of the London Royal Mint in 1899 and is the country’s oldest operational mint . The first Australian Gold Kangaroo coins featured a gold nugget on the back to commemorate Australia’s mining history. However, in 1989, the design changed to showcase a kangaroo. The coin’s design changes every year to depict a different kangaroo.
Two years later, Gold Corporation extended the series of collectible coins to include 2-ounce, 10-ounce, and even 1-kilogram coins. These coins are more novel and, because they’re less popular, don’t have an annual design change; each one features the same red kangaroo design. In 2011, Gold Corporation extended the series again with a 1-ton Australian Gold Kangaroo Coin, which has a face value of $1,000,000 AUD.
Since 2008 and its global financial crisis, there has been an increase in the number of gold collectors investing in these gold bullion coins.
The Australian Kangaroo 1-ounce gold coin is backed by the Australian government for a value of $100 AUD. It’s considered legal tender throughout the country. While the value is backed by the government, its value is also due to each coin holding 1 troy ounce of 99.99% gold. As the value of gold rises, so will the face value of each coin. Along with currency-based and bullion-based value, these Australian gold coins hold numismatic value. Coin collectors will treasure each Australian Kangaroo due to the series’ limited releases, as well as the annual changes to the kangaroo design on the back of the coins. Numismatists can build collections that feature sequential coin releases, thereby increasing the value of the coin collection as a whole.
Along with being a popular coin for gold bullion investors and general coin collectors, the Australian Kangaroo coin is also valuable because it’s a permitted option for IRA investments. This allows savvy investors to reap tax benefits while building up their collection.
Coin collectors and investors can also purchase Australian Gold Kangaroo coins of different denominations, each of which has a different amount or weight of gold and different face value. These coins include:
- The 1/2-troy ounce Australian Gold Kangaroo, with a government-backed value of $50 AUD (This coin is also called the ‘Mini Roo’ because of its smaller size, and it is a popular item for new collectors, hobbyist collectors and collectors on a budget)
- The 1/4-troy ounce Australian Gold Kangaroo, with a government-backed value of $25 AUD
- The 1/10-troy ounce Australian Gold Kangaroo, with a government-backed value of $15 AUD
- The 1/20-troy ounce Australian Gold Kangaroo, with a government-backed value of $5 AUD
The Australian Nugget series, which features the original Red Kangaroo design from 1989, includes collectible coins with gold weights above 1 troy ounce. These coins include:
- The 2-ounce Bullion Nugget Coin, with a denomination of $200 AUD
- The 10-ounce Bullion Nugget Coin, with a denomination of $1,000 AUD
- The 1-kilogram Bullion Nugget Coin, with a denomination of $3,000 AUD
Each Australian Kangaroo coin is golden in appearance due to its composition of 0.9999 gold. They have milled edges and feature writing around the edges of both the obverse and reverse sides of the coins. On the obverse (or front) side of each coin, there is an image of Queen Elizabeth II engraved into the face of the coin with the words ‘Elizabeth II,’ ‘Australia’ and ‘100 Dollars’ surrounding the image. The design of Queen Elizabeth II’s depiction has stayed the same since Ian Rank-Broadley designed it in 1986. On the reverse side, there is an engraving of a kangaroo with the words ‘Australian Kangaroo’ along the top of the coin and ‘1 oz 9999 Gold’ written around the bottom edge, preceded by the release year.
The $100 AUD Kangaroo gold coins have featured these designs on the reverse face since 1987:
- 1987-1989: The ‘Welcome Stranger’ nugget found in Australia in 1869
- 1990: The ‘Red Kangaroo’
- 1991: The ‘Gray Kangaroo’
- 1992: The ‘Common Wallaroo’
- 1993: The ‘Nailtailed Wallaby’
- 1994: The ‘Whiptail Wallaby’
- 1995-2006: The ‘Kangaroo’
- 2007: The ‘Standing Kangaroo’
- 2008-2020: The ‘Kangaroo’
While the names of the designs have been unchanged throughout most of the series, each year has a different reverse-side design. The designs vary in terms of species, setting, pose, and even number of kangaroos in the reverse design. The 2020 Australia Gold Kangaroo coin, for example, features an adult kangaroo and her joey. The 2018 coin was the first in the series to depict two kangaroos, with the pair leaping across the setting.
Australia Gold Kangaroos: An Excellent Investment and Collectors Item
1-ounce Australia Gold Kangaroos are fun and beautiful gold coins. Collectors and investors alike can enjoy them. They are valuable due to their state as government-backed currency, the troy ounce of 99.99% pure gold in each standard coin and the limited issuance of each coin by the Perth Mint. Investors can find coins in circulated and uncirculated condition to add novelty to their collections.
1. The Perth Mint. ‘History,’ https://www.perthmint.com/visit_the_mint_the_perth_mint_history.aspx. Accessed October 23, 2020.
2. Gold IRA Guide. ‘Australian Kangaroo/Nugget Coins,’ https://goldiraguide.org/allowed-in-ira/australian-kangaroonugget-coins/. Accessed October 23, 2020.
3. The Perth Mint Australia. ‘The Australian Nugget / Kangaroo Gold Bullion Coin Series 1987 – 2015,’ https://www.perthmint.com/documents/1The_Australian_Nugget__Kangaroo_Gold_Bullion_Coin_Series_1987-2015.pdf.. Accessed September 21, 2020.