American Buffalo Gold Coin

American Buffalo Gold Bullion Coin Review

Do you want to add unparalleled beauty, rich history, and high-value precious metal to your portfolio? Then, you might like to consider the first-ever 24 karat gold bullion gold produced by the United States Mint.

Precious metal investors and collectors are sometimes confused about which gold coins they should buy, especially the novice ones. The best thing they can do is purchase a particular type of coin that makes them most comfortable.

When selecting the preferred bullion coin brands, there are two key considerations. First, the buying and selling liquidity resulted from the coin’s popularity and demand. Second, the buying and selling prices’ relative levels.

Meanwhile, since the introduction of American Buffalo Gold coin to the precious metal industry, this coin remains one of the most treasured commodities in the world. Keep reading to discover more about these rare coins and whether they are an excellent addition to your portfolio or not.

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American Buffalo Gold Coin: History, Introduction, and Development

American Buffalo Coin

On June 22, 2006, the United States Mint offered the first 24 karat bullion coin for sale. This coin is also known as the “Gold Buffalo,” and its availability for shipment started on July 13, 2006.

The American Gold Buffalo Coin meets the bullion IRA investing purity requirements set by the Internal Revenue Services (IRS). Since the coin’s inception, it has quickly increased in popularity and value among precious metal collectors and investors.

The American Buffalo bullion coins’ production and the sale were authorized by the US Congress through the Presidential $1 Coin Act of 2005. The Act requires the gold used in the American Buffalos’ production to be from newly mined sources in the US. Then, any US bullion coin must be struck at the West Point Min, NY. This Act also aims to establish the coins’ rarity by limiting them to 300,000 proof coins and only 10 American Gold Buffalo proof coins in each household.

One of the reasons the American Buffalos were developed and released is that some investors prefer buying foreign pure gold bullion over the American Gold Eagle Coins that contain 91.6 percent gold alloy.

The American Gold Buffalo coin also has a proof variation with a mint mark. Proof American Buffalos undergo special dyeing during the modified minting process when the pure gold metal is pressed. The coins generate a mirror-like polish on the front and rear sides by repeatedly struck.

There is also an American Buffalo coin uncirculated version, which was made available for sale later on. The uncirculated versions undergo a varying minting process, unlike other American Gold Buffalo coins, but they have the same appearance.

The term “uncirculated” means that the coin is not legal tender and with no transactional value. When sold, uncirculated coins usually have lower costs compared to proof or bullion coins. On September 6, 2008, the United States Mint halted the American Buffalo coins’ sale.

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The US Mint explained the reason behind the limited mintage: the 24K American Buffalo one-ounce bullion coins’ demand has exceeded the supply. Plus, the Mint’s inventories have been depleted. So, they have temporarily suspended the coins’ sales. Later, production and sales resumed.

American Buffalo Gold Coin: Physical Characteristics

Coin design & Specification

The American Buffalo gold coins are famous for their frosty mirror-like shine. Read more to learn the coins’ physical characteristics, including their design and specifications.

Coin Design

The US Mint chose a profile image from the Buffalo Nickel or Indian Head Nickel coin for the American Buffalo coin design. Buffalo Nickel coins were minted in the USA between 1913 and 1938.

The American Buffalo coin’s design was created by James Earl Fraser, a well-renowned American sculptor. The images of the Native American Indian head on the obverse side and the American Buffalo standing on the mount on the reverse side are slightly modified by Fraser.

This coin design was also seen on the 2001 Smithsonian commemorative coin. On the obverse side of the coins, there is the “LIBERTY” word. On the reverse side, it reads “IN GOD WE TRUST,” “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” and “EL PLURIBUS UNUM.”

Inside the mounts on which the iconic buffalo stands, the “$50 1 OZ. .9999 FINE GOLD” statement is located. According to Fraser, the Native American Indian’s face is a combination of three tribes: Two Moons, Big Tree, and Iron Tail.

In Native American Indian’s hair, there are details like two eagle feathers and one visible braid. On the reverse side of this popular coin, there is a beast named Black Diamond. This beast, or American bison, is believed to be an inhabitant of Central Park Zoo in New York during the early 1900s.

Coin Specifications

The American Gold Buffalo coins have four varying fractional sizes: 1 oz, ½ oz, ¼ oz, and 1/10 oz. In 2008, only 1/10 oz, ¼ oz, and ½ oz coins were available, but currently, 1 oz gold coin is already available for production and sale.

US Mint set specifications for 1 oz coin:

  • Composition: 99.99 percent gold (24 karats)
  • Finish: Proof
  • Denomination: $50
  • Weight: 31.103 grams (1.0000 troy ounces)
  • Diameter: 32.70 mm (1.287 inches)
  • Mint and Mint Mark: West Point – W
  • Edge: Reeded

The .999 (24K) gold used in American Gold Buffalo makes the coins slightly less resistant to wear compared to other .916 (22 karats) gold in American Gold Eagle coins and other investment-grade bullion.

How is American Buffalo Pricing Determined?

Pricing strategy

In the United States, American Buffalo bullion is a legal tender, with each weight denomination having transaction worth or face value dictated by the law. However, the bullion’s face value is significantly symbolic.

An American Gold Buffalo coin is often almost priced and sold based on its value determined by the gold’s market price, known as intrinsic value. The market price is used to determine the American Buffalos’ value when it comes to the investment portfolio.

When Gold Buffalo coins are sold, a premium is typically added to the market value to cover the production and distribution costs. The Gold Buffalos’ market value fluctuates since the gold’s market price fluctuates daily.

American Buffalo Gold Coin: Investing Through an IRA

Investors seeking to add high-purity precious metal to their IRA can consider the Gold Buffalo as an excellent option. The United States government is responsible for guaranteeing the coins’ purity.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows particular IRA types to carry platinum, gold, silver bullion, and other metals in an investment portfolio. They are usually referred to as precious metals IRAs. These self-directed IRAs only contain gold American Buffalo coins and other IRS-approved bullion.

The minimum amount required for purchasing bullion is $5,000 to establish a precious metal IRA. Any subsequent purchase should be a minimum of $1,000.

Investors with existing IRAs can choose whether they want to roll over or transfer their funds into a precious metal IRA from another qualified retirement account. According to the IRS requirement, all investment bullion should be kept in a depository. This depository is responsible for securing and maintaining precious metals.

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Beware that the US Mint does not allow direct purchase of American Gold Buffalo coins from them. Instead, these coins are distributed to the qualifying banks and brokerage houses. These institutions will buy these gold coins in bulk at above the market value, a slight premium. American Buffalo Uncirculated coins and American Buffalo proof coins are not available for purchase at a fixed price from the Mint as well.

Benefits of Buying American Buffalo Gold Coins

Are you interested in investing in gold bullion coins? American Buffalo coins offer many advantages for your investment journey.

Unlike other gold coins on the market, American Buffalo offers a high purity level. For example, American Eagle gold coins are only 22 karats, while the Gold Buffalo is 24 karats, making them the purest minted gold coins in the US.

These coins are highly prized by coin collectors and investors. They even offer a beautiful classic design, attracting more buyers. They also reflect the rich history and depict the native heritage of the West.

With a variety of sizes, these coins’ precious metal content is an excellent choice for people with different budgets. The US government backs up all coins with a $50 face value. You can even trade them at higher prices closer to the gold’s spot price.

You can also buy these coins at Hero Bullion and of course, Goldco Direct.


The US government’s issuance of the Gold Buffalo coins successfully acknowledged their need for high-quality and fine gold. If you plan to buy these coins, you have peace of mind knowing that you will receive a guaranteed, high-purity, and quality precious metal product.

Whenever you worry about the economy or if you are interested in investing in valuable precious metals, these coins are always an incredible option.

FAQs About American Buffalo Gold Coins

If you still have questions in mind about gold American Buffalo, here are the frequently asked questions:

What is the gold content of each American Buffalo coin?

Every American Gold Buffalo coin has a $50 face value and contains .9999 fine gold for one troy ounce. The coin’s diameter is 1.287 inches and is 0.116 inches thick, making the coin about the same size as the US half-dollar coin.

Is there a limit for purchasing American Buffalo Gold coins per transaction?

YES. Investors can add or include the Gold Buffalo coins to their precious metal investment portfolio with a minimum of 10 one-ounce coins per purchase. That is to ensure the coins’ rarity.

Can I purchase Gold Buffalo coins for my IRA?

The answer is YES. This .9999 fine gold is approved by the IRA, so you can use it in your gold IRA.

How to purchase and receive Gold Buffalo coins?

First, you have to decide how many coins you wish to buy. Then, an account representative from a qualified bank or precious metal broker will assist you in executing your order over the phone. Then, you have to acknowledge and confirm your purchase as well as the gold price voice recorded line. You will receive a written confirmation about the details of your order.

After you order, you have to process the payment. However, most brokers or banks require the buyer to initiate the payment on the day of purchase. In other words, you need to wire or mail the funds on the same day of the transaction.

You can have the coins delivered to a depository for storage, made available for pickup at the facility, or shipped to your home.

Arthur Karter


Hi, I’m Arthur, and nobody wants to wake up in their 50s like me that they are in serious debt with minimal assets. This wake-up call forced me to reevaluate everything. After going through the school of Hard Knocks, I’m ready to help you by sharing the best retirement choices and how they differ from all the same-old, same-old options that financial advisors sell. These alternatives will help you build and protect your wealth.

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