An error made by the Royal Mint during the manufacturing process of its 2014 one ounce Silver Britannia coins could prove to be more profitable for investors.
The Royal Mint launched two one ounce silver bullion coin this year, the established £2 silver Britannia and a second commemorative £2 silver bullion coin to commemorate the Year of the Horse.
However, a minting error resulted in 17,000 Britannia coins being struck with the obverse die of the Lunar bullion and 38,000 commemorative coins minted with the obverse die intended for the standard Britannia.
When a coin is struck with an incorrect die, it is known in the industry as a “mule” but are highly sought after among collectors for their uniqueness – regardless that they were made in error.
Spot the difference
Both the Britannia and the Lunar coins are available in the marketplace, but the differences are very subtle. Both coins show the head of the Queen Elizabeth II on the reverse. The Britannia coin has Philip Nathan’s iconic design of Britannia and the Lunar coin has the familiar image of a running horse.
Both coins are minted with .999 fineness of silver and have the same specifications in weight and diameter. The only way to distinguish whether you have a mule or not is by the dentils on the obverse side of the coin.
The standard Lunar coins were not intended to have dentils, but because the coins have been struck with the wrong die, some Lunar coins will feature dentils. Likewise, Britannia coins that should have had dentils are smooth around the edges.
Despite the error, for investors looking to invest in silver Britannia coins this year can be assured that the purchase value, and the quality, is the same as the standard editions – although the sell-on value will be considerably higher.
Investing in silver Britannia coins
The Britannia silver coin is recognised throughout the world as a solid investment for its prestige and quality of manufacturing. Although Britannia coins were only struck in 1987 for the first time in order to quench the global demand for UK silver bullion, the representation of Britannia dates back to the Roman era and entwines the coin with British history.
Now the US economy is showing positive signs of strengthening, silver prices are in decline which means the coming weeks and months are a prime time to add silver bullion to your investment portfolio.
Spot prices for silver bullion dropped below the $20 an ounce barrier last week and are expected to continue the downward trend this week if economic data in the US shows signs of acceleration. The early indicators look good for the dollar and bad for silver.
That depends which way you look at the market however, as investors intending to add silver bullion to their investment portfolio have a great opportunity to pick up bargains from online retailers like coininvest.com. If you want to protect your financial future, investing in one ounce silver Britannia coins is not a bad way to go about it!