Friday, November 18, 2011

2012 Chinese Panda Coin Design - Silver/Gold

UPDATE: You can now buy 2012 Chinese Pandas from Bullion Money as discussed in this post. Click here to buy Silver Pandas, click here to buy Gold Pandas.

I have briefly talked about the Chinese Panda coin series in the past. Mainly reflecting on why I believe Australian Lunar and Kookaburra coins to be the better choice (lower mintage, higher local demand and more, read here & here), however the Panda is still a popular coin collected by many so thought the new design & mintage details might be of interest to readers (h/t to Silver Stackers members for posting the info).

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The Silver 1 ounce coin is going to have a mintage of 8 million coins, which well exceeds last years mintage of 6 million coins and dwarfs the 1.5 million minted in 2010. Furthermore the Chinese Mint has been known to increase the size of the mintage part way through the year.

Here is the full list of mintage numbers (courtesy of this site):

1/20 Gold, 20 Yuan, mintage 800,000
1/10 Gold, 50 Yuan, mintage 800,000
1/4 Gold, 100 Yuan, mintage 600,000
1/2 Gold, 200 Yuan, mintage 600,000
1 oz Gold, 500 Yuan, mintage 600,000
5 oz Gold, 2000 Yuan, mintage 5,000
1kg Gold, 10000 Yuan, mintage 500
1 oz Silver, 10 Yuan, mintage 8,000,000
5 oz Silver, 50 Yuan, mintage 50,000
1kg Silver, 300 Yuan, mintage 20,000

And here are some pictures of the Gold and Silver design:

In my opinion the design is as uninspired as the Perth Mint 2012 Lunar Dragon (which simply reversed the Dragon from the 2000 design), using what looks like the same Pandas from the 2011 coin, simply in a different position.

No doubt it will still be a popular coin when it is released for public purchase in the near future.


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  1. You said, "In my opinion the design is as uninspired as the Perth Mint 2012 Lunar Dragon (which simply reversed the Dragon from the 2000 design), using what looks like the same Pandas from the 2011 coin, simply in a different position."

    Agreed 100% but that is the big problem with these so-called annualised bullion designs. There are only so many directions an animal depicted on a coin could face. Take the gold roo, fine it jumped to the left on one year, to the right the next, and where to next, out of the coin towards the beholder? It will get tired and boring very soon. What about that famous leaf? The front, the back, and a raked pile in the gardens next?

    However, when you only have each of the animal on the lunar calendar appearing once every 12 years and PM couldn't even get it right, it is one heck of a joke bordering on complacency and arrogance (i.e. someone will buy it so move along if you don't like it).

    Series I, we had a sure win 12 in a row I'd say. But with series II, I have the following to say (I'll limit it to gold otherwise or I could go on forever):

    Rat: Hamster? Guinea pig?
    Ox: Lazy. Tired.
    Tiger: Driver's license photo update?
    Rabbit: Cute. Best amongst the worst.
    Dragon: Pathetic droopy right horn, 4 claws, out of whack head-to-neck ratio. Battered fins and tail fin. Just take a look at the performance of the over hyped 2012 1oz gold dragon. Less fees, shipping etc. one would be extremely lucky just to breakeven.

    Thus, mintage is one thing but if designs are inferior - in comparison and context, I'd say the pandas are more pleasing to the eyes.

  2. Some fair comments anon. In most cases the appeal of a design comes down to personal taste, there will probably be many who like the 2012 Panda design, but I can't say it appeals to me.

    I've found most of the the Gold series 2 lunar coins unappealing visually (I like the dragon though), IMO the Silver designs are an improvement in most cases.

    I just can't see a Silver Panda with an 8,000,000 coin mintage picking up a large numismatic premium like the past Pandas have. I would prefer to take my chances with the 300,000 - 500,000 mintage of the Perth Mint coins (Kookaburras/Lunars) even if the designs aren't as attractive.

  3. Indeed, mintage wise the lunar and kooks are no brainers. In spite of that, I'm disappointed the 2012 1oz silver bullion dragons craze only lasted seconds though.

    Design wise, subjective.

    The talk of the day now is the 2012 1oz kooks. Some people are banging their hands for not getting them sooner but with that nearly double the mintage of the dragons, I won't panic looking at the latter's performance.

    Are the series II doing well at all?

    Further to your comments about the silver designs, series I that is yeah? In my view, the animals' designs were ok but PM should not have messed around going backwards and forwards with the floral and bats borders. Cleaner without them but introducing them midway then pulling out was just inconsistent.

  4. Dragons are selling for around $60-70, which is still around double spot. I would be happy with a 20% premium over equivalent coins from the Kookaburra short term, but longer term I suspect it will be possible to swap 1 Kookaburra for 2 ounces equivalent Silver (1 oz coins) due to the lower mintage. This is my goal with both Dragons and the Kooks (expecting 3:1 ounces for the Dragons), to trade for larger amounts of Silver as demand for the metals increases.

    I was talking about the series 2 Silver coins. I quite like the Mouse, Tiger and Dragon designs, the Ox and Rabbits are ok as well.

    It was actually revealed recently that the bats/floral design on the Series 1 coins was an oversight and it was only the 1 coin that was supposed to have it.