The Australian Silver Kangaroo is a one troy ounce silver bullion coin minted by the Royal Australian Mint in Canberra, Australia. They are of course, legal tender in Australia and what is even more unique is that their design changes almost annually. That fact, coupled with the fact that there is a very limited number of coins minted annually adds to the value of the coin.
The Silver Kangaroo was introduced by the Royal Australian Mint in 1993. The coin is issued in three forms. One is a proof coin, one is an uncirculated coin, and the other is a frosted uncirculated coin. There have also been a few coins with gold plating that have been issued since 2003. The Silver Kangaroo is really the pride and joy of the Royal Australian Mint.
Design and Appearance
The obverse side of the Silver Kangaroo was designed by Horst Hahne and depicts none other than a kangaroo. On the reverse side, which was designed by Raphael Maklouf, there is a depiction of Queen Elizabeth II. The reverse design never changes, but the obverse design changes every single year. Both sides of the original coin were designed in 1993. One single coin is worth 1 Australian dollar. In 2007 there were only 15,000 coins made, this small amount is what makes it particularly alluring to collectors and investors.
The three different forms of Australian Silver Kangaroos each have slightly different manufacturing processes. All three of the coins are created using dies of clean, high quality steel. The dies are sand-blasted to provide a frosted finish, and are then polished. After that comes hand polishing, when sections of the die are polished under a microscope for 2-3 hours. Diamond lapping paste is used to provide the dies with a mirror-like finish.
Once all polishing and finishing is complete, the die face is covered with a piece of clear tape, which is then cut away to leave the dies’ design exposed. Once the dies are ready for pressing, 360 tons of force is used to produce about 500 coins per day.
In addition to the steps listed above, uncirculated coins receive even more attention to their die finish, are struck with greater pressure to provide enhanced clarity of the design, and are packaged individually. In addition to all of that, frosted uncirculated coins have the background of their dies sand-blasted and polished to create a contrast between the design and background of the coin. Also, frosted uncirculated coins have reverse frosted/polished areas from a proof coin (the frosted uncirculated coins’ image is polished and their field is frosted).
Weight and Purity
The Silver Kangaroo weighs exactly 1 troy ounce and is made of 99.9% silver. The coin has reeded edges and a diameter of 40mm. It is 4mm thick. The fact that the coin is 1 troy ounce makes it a very effective bullion coin for trading and purchasing.
Australian Kangaroos are also produced in gold, which have the same dimensions and weights as Silver Australian Kangaroos, but fetch a much higher price due to the higher value of gold metal.
Distribution and Resale
Unlike the American Silver Eagle, which is distributed to only 11 Authorized Purchasers, Australian Silver Kangaroos can be purchased directly by the end consumer from the Royal Australian Mint, either online, by phone, or by mail. There are no minimum purchases, so you don’t have to be a huge distributor or retailer to buy Australian Silver Kangaroos directly from the Royal Australian Mint.
Once coins are sold by the Royal Australian Mint, there is an enormous secondary market for Silver Kangaroos. Retail sites purchase and sell all years and varieties of Australian Silver Kangaroos. Certain years and varieties are more valuable than others, and this is mainly based on how many coins of that type were minted that year by the Australian Mint.
The Royal Australian Mint produces only a limited number of Silver Kangaroos per year, thus making the Silver Kangaroo one of the more valuable numismatic coins. Proof Silver Kangaroos routinely sell in the secondary market for $10+ above the spot price of silver, and some of the more rarer varieties and years sell for far greater sums.
Buy Australian Silver Kangaroo
Buying the Australian Silver Kangaroo online is a great way to invest and/or add this unique coin to your collection. Australian minted silver bullion retains and holds its value as well as just about any other nationally produced silver coins, so you know that it is a solid buy. Purchase the Kangaroo in a variety of different weights and issues from many different years by following one of the links below or above.