Silver coins come in many sizes, from mints worldwide, ranging from 1/10 oz coins to higher weight categories like 2 oz or 5 oz. The variation in these coins gives investors quite a lot to think about -- different weights, purities, designs, and mints make for many choices.
That range of options is a positive aspect of silver investment, but it can also be overwhelming. Let’s take a look at the benefit of different sizes of silver coins, as well as the benefits of buying silver in general.
2 oz coins are among the heavier weight categories for silver coins, having been popularized by La Casa de Moneda de México (the national mint of Mexico) with its 1996 issuance of the silver Libertad. Two troy ounces of silver makes for a coin with a very substantial and satisfying feel in your hand, and this is undeniably part of the appeal for many investors and collectors.
Along with the feel and sound of these coins when held or stacked together, higher-weight coins typically offer more value for your money, often priced at a lower premium over the current spot price of silver than smaller coins. Choosing heavier-weight coins is comparable to buying in bulk for a discount, instead of buying smaller sums of silver separately.
Of course, smaller weight classes allow investors to buy a broader range of coins from different mints for a similar price, which has the benefit of diversifying their collections. Some investors choose to mix larger and smaller coins together, and others are set on buying larger coins for a weighty, higher-value-per-coin collection.
Mints from all over the world issue 2 oz silver coins. The 2 oz silver unicorn issued by the United Kingdom’s Royal Mint is part of the popular Queen’s Beasts collection, with a fineness of 0.9999 silver. The series is laden with history, with all designs based on statues created by sculptor James Woodward in 1953 to celebrate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. The unicorn on the obverse side of this coin was created by Jody Clark in 2016, drawing close inspiration from Woodward’s craftsmanship. Symbolically, the unicorn itself is a nod to Scotland’s King James IV of the 16th century whose coat of arms featured two unicorns rampant.
The 2 oz silver kangaroo by the Perth Mint contains two troy ounces of 0.999 fine silver and features a red kangaroo hopping across the iconic landscape of the Australian outback on the reverse side. This low mintage coin is backed by the Australian government and constitutes legal tender in Australia.
Other examples include:
Owning physical silver is completely different than simply investing in paper-based or digital silver holdings. Unlike paper-based silver, your holdings are invulnerable to hacking or erasure through an error on the various computer systems that support the digital silver trade. You have no concern whatsoever about whether your digital claim to ownership actually represents any tangible silver. You don’t have to worry about “tracking errors” that occur when the price between “paper” silver and spot price diverge. Most of all, you can hold your real, honest, tangible money in your hand. It’s still there even when the lights go out.
You can choose to personally store your own silver, offering you an added layer of privacy as well as the joy of seeing and handling your own silver. You may also choose to have your coins stored in a vault from which you can withdraw them at any time.
When investing in physical coins with such a rich and varied history, much of the pleasure of ownership comes in handling them physically and in person. You can study the fine craftsmanship and attention to detail paid to each coin by its issuing mint and even show your collection to friends, children, or guests if you wish.
Certain silver coins are even eligible for investment into a precious metals IRA, which is also the case with gold coins.
While both silver and gold are extremely popular among investors seeking to hedge against cash inflation or to personally store their own physical wealth, there are key differences to note.
Silver tends to be more volatile than gold, which means the spot price of silver makes bigger moves, both up and down. This is partially because silver has a smaller market size (in 2019, about ⅙ the market cap of gold), which makes any market-moving events even more potent. The volatility is also due to the many industrial uses of silver, including electronics, automobiles, solar panels, batteries, medical technology, and many more.
The higher volatility makes silver better positioned for capitalizing on short-term price swings, while gold tends to move more slowly and in a more stable fashion.
Finally, silver’s price per ounce is a great deal lower than the other big three precious metals (gold, platinum, and palladium). This makes silver coins of all sizes an extremely affordable starting point for new collectors and savers who wish to convert their digital bank balances into tangible, physical precious metals.