How to Buy and Sell Gold Coins for Profit

As the value of currency weakens, the price of gold tends to go up. You can profit from this pattern in a variety of ways. This page will cover how you can do it with gold coins, which have better liquidity than bars.[1]


  1. Image titled Buy and Sell Gold Coins for Profit Step 1
    Know which coins to buy. Gold coins can be segregated into various types.
    • The most common bullion coins (e.g. American Gold Eagle, South African Krugerrand) sell for, approximately, their base gold value.
    • Rare collectible (numismatic) coins can sell at a (sometimes very high) premium--more than the gold value alone. While there is more potential profit here, you'll need to learn as much as possible about grading and evaluating rare coins. Not recommended for beginners.
    • The standard weight for a gold coin is one troy ounce (31.1 grams, a little heavier than the standard ounce). There are coins that weigh less than one troy ounce (1ozt), but they trade less frequently, and you will pay a bigger percentage premium to buy them from dealers. That will cut into your potential profits.
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    One of the most important things you can do to minimize your losses is make sure the coins are made from real gold without damaging them.
    • Have a 3rd party certified coin dealer verify they are real.
  3. Image titled Buy and Sell Gold Coins for Profit Step 3
    Plan where you will store the coins. Any secure method of storage is going to cost you money. Consider a bank safe deposit box, a home safe or a safekeeping program offered by some gold dealers. This only concerns investors, though. You will keep the coins on hand if you plan to resell them for a quick profit.
  4. Image titled Buy and Sell Gold Coins for Profit Step 4
    Shop around. There are many ways you can buy gold coins. Your best bet is to compare prices on whichever coin you're thinking of buying.
    • Buy from a government. Their coins usually come with a reliable guarantee of gold content, weight, and purity. The US government sells gold coins online.[2]
    • Buy on an online auction site such as Ebay.
    • Buy from an individual dealer. This is the riskiest route. Try to obtain a price guarantee (a specific value guarantee that the dealer places on your coin). On the flip-side, some dealers make shady guarantees in order to sucker buyers to purchase their coins.
    • If you want to buy coins below market value, like the dealers do, learn how to buy coins from the public.
  5. Image titled Buy and Sell Gold Coins for Profit Step 5
    Keep track of gold value. Most newspapers report the price of gold daily, and you can get almost instantaneous updates online at several sites.
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    Keep track of value of currency in your country. This is also widely reported. As mentioned earlier, there tends to be an inverse relationship between that and the value of gold.
  7. Image titled Buy and Sell Gold Coins for Profit Step 7
    Aim to sell your coins at the peak of demand. This is where both research and intuition steps in. You want to sell your coins right before the value of gold starts going down, so that you walk away from the transaction with more money than you spent on the coins. Since timing the market does not always work, you should consider selling when gold price is at all time high, the demand is very high, the sentiment is generally bullish, and you are sitting at a sizeable profit.


  • Gold coins prices are affected by a number of factors such as the rarity of the coin and gold supply and demand.
  • Gold coins are very special coins in that, no matter how damaged the coin is, no matter the grade, there is still a nice hunk of gold in the coin. Even the most damaged coins are still worth plenty in their scrap value.
  • Gold coins that are minted by the U.S. government (or one of the states) can be held by IRA accounts.


  • Watch out for gold-plated coins. Just because it is plated in gold does not mean it is worth lots of money. The actual gold is a very, very thin layer on top of the coin, making it worth less than pure gold coins. You might want to read How to Tell if Gold Is Real.
  • In the US, gold coins are subject to a higher long-term federal capital gains tax rate when you sell -- 28% versus a top rate of 15% for securities such as stocks. One way to get around this is to use retirement plan funds to buy the gold coins.[3]

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