silver-panda-2016On 28 October, the Chinese central bank will launch their new 2016 gold and silver Panda coins. An interesting detail discovered by @BullionBaron is that these coins will not appear in one troy ounce size.
Instead, they will be minted on a metric weight system with sizes varying from 1 gram up to 1 kilogram.


Submitted by Frank Knopers, Market Update:

The one troy ounce version of the gold and silver Panda coins are replaced with a coin weighing 30 grams. That’s slightly less than a troy ounce, which equals 31.1034768 grams.

The press release on the People’s Bank of China website mentions nine different sizes for the gold Panda and three different versions of the silver coin. All these coins have a 99,9% purity and will be produced with a limited mintage. For more details on mintage and the yuan face value, we refer to the press release on the central bank of China’s website.

Gold coins:  1 gram, 3 gram, 8 gram, 15 gram, 30 gram, 50 gram, 100 gram, 150 gram, 1 kilogram

Silver coins: 30 gram, 150 gram, 1 kilogram


From troy ounce to 30 gram for the gold Panda coin


From troy ounce to 30 gram for the silver Panda coin


Troy ounce

The history of the troy ounce goes back to the Roman empire, where bronze bars were casted in a size referred to as ‘troy pound’. One twelfth of this size was called the uncia back then, orounce in English. That is where the English name troy ounce emerged, a weight defined as 480 grains or 31,1034768 grams. The troy ounce format has been used ever since in the monetary system. It is known to be in use in England since about 1400. The American Congress recognized the troy ounce as a measure of weight in the Coinage Act of 1828.

The term troy ounce is often connected to the city of Troyes as well, once an important trading town located in France.

Precious metals

While our monetary system evolved from gold and silver coins to fiat money, the troy ounce weight survived as a standard weight for precious metals. Gold, silver, platinum and palladium coins are often based on this odd weight of a little over 31,1 grams. Well known investment coins like the Maple Leaf, the American Eagle and Philharmonikers, just to name a few, are all based on troy ounces or a fraction of it.


The history of the troy ounce lies in civilizations and monetary systems in the Western world. That’s why the troy ounce is quite unfamiliar in China.  Because the Chinese monetary system didn’t use the troy ounce, it is far from logical to use this standard measure of weight besides the metric system of grams and kilograms.

So it isn’t just a symbolic move by the People’s Bank of China to switch from troy ounce to grams for their investment coins. The shift from troy ounce to the metric system is an ongoing event in China, were they prefer gold bars of 1 kilogram instead of the 400 troy ounce Londen ‘Good Delivery’. Swiss refiners have been melting many of these larger bars into new kilogram bars, destined for the Chinese gold market.



  1. Gold is gold, but 1 gram coins? OMG, don’t sneeze or all is lost!

    The first gold bullion I ever got was back in the 1980’s and consisted of a 1 gram bar …. so small and thin one had to keep it in an envelope so not to lose it …. I still have it somewhere …. but where?

  2. This is interesting in that tiny coins as thin as paper and easily damaged might have trouble gaining acceptable.   Silver would still be around that 1 troy ounce level so not much difference there.  That 1 gram gold coin?  I’d be good with that if it was legal tender.  Coin purses might come back into popularity.  China’s making another thrust into the paper currency paradigm.  What was good then would be good now   Real money with real value based on precious metal

    That working in the US as recently as 1964.

    • AGXIIK,

      I have no problem with gold coins (I have a lot of them … or I did before that boating accident), but the 1/10 ounce US Eagle has over three times the mass of what the Chinese are talking about, and while there is obviously not a 3 times loss in diameter we are talking really diminutive coins. One of the big reasons they were discontinued before was that they were commonly dropped and lost. Another factor is that there will be a surcharge on these, and like in most coinage the smaller the item the higher the percentage charged to cover minting and handling costs.

      I’ll pass for silver on anything smaller than 3 grams (about 1/10 Ozt)


    • I like to buy the old New Zealand 50% junk silver 1933-1946 (only thirteen years in our nations history with real money). The smallest denomination is threepence which contains .705 grams or .02267 oz so not much at all. The coin is small but not too small and was successfully used for commerce. The thing I really like about them is how beautiful they are so whenever I can buy them for around the same price per oz as Perth Mint coins I do – although this is getting harder and harder to find.

    • @fukidontknow


      “The smallest denomination is threepence which contains .705 grams or .02267 oz so not much at all.”


      That is tiny… less than 1/3 the size of a pre-1965 US 10 cent silver coin, aka a dime, which has 0.07234 Troy oz. of silver in it.

      Excellent coin pics, BTW.  🙂


    • Thanks @Ed_B That’s the silver weight so the coin is twice that as they are 50%. I also like to buy Australian junk silver especially the 1966 50 cent which is 80% silver with just over a third of an oz. They are almost all in un-circulated  condition as silver rose in price that same year to where the face value was less than the silver content value – so they were all gresham’s lawed into hoards before they had a chance to wear. I am finding it harder and harder to find this sort of silver at a reasonable price – a sign of the times maybe.

    • Yes, definitely a sign of the times.  US 90% silver coins can be hard to find here in the US OR the premiums on them can become outrageous.  When that happens, it is more cost effective to buy Maples or ASEs to get more silver weight per dollar spent.

      Those 1966 Aussie 50 cent pieces sound similar to US silver half dollars.  I like these a lot and have a few of them, mostly the Kennedy halves but also some Franklins and a few Walking Liberty halves as well.  They all contain about 0.36 Tro oz. of silver.

      I also have a fair number of Washington quarters and Roosevelt dimes. I prefer the BU coins because they are so nice to look at but do have some circulated coins as well.  Good stuff.  Oh, I forgot to mention the Morgan dollars.  I have about 3 dozen of them.  They are one of my favorites.  🙂


  3. Best Reason to own Silver !!

    The legend that Vampires could not cross silver is very similar to that of the witch not being able to cross silver. The origin of this being, in this time in history, silver was a very precious metal; almost as precious as gold. The poor and middle class normally did not own silver jewelry. However, in poorer parishes some of the priests did have silver crosses. Silver reflects light, God is light, light destroys dark, Vampires are believed to be dark … hence a Vampire could be destroyed by silver.
    What does this have to do with a witch?

    Witches were believed to be servants of Satan, brides of Satan, corrupted by Satan and evil. Pretty much the same as a Vampire. Witches were not classified as demons but they were able to summon them. Witches were the ultimate evil and witches were also destroyed by light and other methods of purification, hence witches could not cross silver. It was also believed that witches worked with sulphur. Sulphur is an element of Hell. Hell was supposed to be the place of fire and brimstone. Brimstone was, at this time, another meaning for sulphur. Witches worked with sulphur and some witches were believed to have jewelry or implements of silver, sulphur corroded silver, or the witches’ evil corroded the silver. Hence witches could not wear silver or cross silver, pretty much the same as the Vampire … who also resided in Hell, amongst the fire and brimstone.

    We realize today, that the people the church saw as evil witches were no more than female herbalists, midwives, women who had money or status or other possessions coveted by someone else.

    In some countries, it was also believed that not unlike a werewolf, a vampire could be killed with a silver dagger, spear, knife and such. This author finds it difficult to believe that a human could have gotten that close, if mythical vampires were real, to be able to stab one in the heart with a small dagger.

    Silver: When most people think of silver weapons killing monsters they think of silver bullets and werewolves, however, silver stakes, spears and daggers have also been known to slow down and kill vampires. Silver is considered to be a metal of purity and has been used for protection against evil in almost every world culture throughout history. Silver can be melted down to form amulets, jewelry, bullets, daggers and religious symbols such as crucifixes. Silver amulets and daggers can be put into the ground above the grave to prevent evil spirits from escaping. Silver nails drove into coffin lids are said to help prevent evil spirits from rising from the grave.

    Hi Ho Silver! The purity of silver is considered toxic to vampires; at least, to some of them. Damage caused by silver weapons cause wounds that do not heal, and piercing their hearts with a silver weapon would kill a vampire instantly. Some of them, anyway.

    eric_aixelsyd · 9 years ago

    Thumbs up


    • I knew a guy who suffered from lycanthropy once.  He didn’t seem to have too many problems with silver but he often found himself waking up at night to find himself completely naked and running around on all fours in the middle of the woods.

      Interestingly he was an academic and had researched some of the arcane tomes on these occult subjects.  He was able to identify my similar but somewhat more serious problem which can be mistaken for the gentler vampirism.  Silver doesn’t affect me either even when ingested in significant quantities.  I have not however tried bullets yet.

    • @Dagger, there’s always a bit of truth in myths and legends. That silver was a counterpunch to evil men with fiat schemes could be the origin of such beliefs because who is more wolflike and vampirical amongst men than the babylonian banksters?

      @goldguy, what does gentler vampirism entail?


  4. @SilverDagger   That was a fun read.  I’d pay a dollar to see Ron Paul  flash that ASE at Hillary Clinton instead of Bernanke.  Carrying a silver coin now seems an even better idea   Here’s an invention that could be quite something.  A 90% pure silver knife.  Fairly hard but still enough silver to do battle with evil forces.  I wonder if it would work on bankers and politicians.

    • @AGXIIK


      “Here’s an invention that could be quite something.  A 90% pure silver knife.”


      Excellent idea, Bro.  It could be made in the shape of a cross with the vertical part elongated and pointed at the bottom.  The arms of the cross could serve as a hand-guard.  One stick from such a dagger-cross should be enough to do in just about any servant of evil.  🙂


  5. @censored   The US silver dime, Liberty or Roosevelt, weighed 2.5 grams so that would be adecent ‘smallest coin’ weight.  Granted, it’s worth only $1.17 today, based on silver content, but those spent nicely back in the day.  If silver was $50 an ounce, there’s a coin worth $4 or so.   China may be ahead of the curve in monetizing currency in precious metals format. The paper gold currency bill, with gold infused into the actual bill itself might be the solution to the gram weight coin problems.  Gold is really soft and losing a small coin would be a bummer.

    As a consequence of selling gold and silver at a gun show around 4 years ago, someone snatched a 1 troy ounce gold kangaroo from me when I was not looking.  Either than or I dropped it when kayaking on the lake.  There is a funny thing about this drought in the Sierras, the lake level is dropping so fast I might be able to find all that silver lost when my boat sank.

    • Sorry to hear about your kangaroo (magnificent coins BTW)

      Agreed on the smallest coin size or even a bit smaller. The dime is just at 18mm while the 1/10 Ozt Eagle is at 16.5 … close enough



  6. Ounce, gram, kilo or pound…. i’ll take it. Metal is still metal. Not too long ago, I read an article about a company who would laminate precious metals into a bill sized lamination. The metal was paper thin but there was a gram of gold in each bill. I’m too busy at the moment to find it, but Google it if you’re interested… neat technology for small metal denominations, which you can  carry around in your wallet like FRNs.

  7. I would have thought a 25g silver coin alloyed with base metal up to the troy ounce might have made a new hard wearing global currency post the mad-max era.  It’s value would be 25g – obviously.

    The Royal Canadian Mint do a rather nice alternative to the valcambi card: a 1g gold coin card with 25(?) coins in it.  Neat if obvious idea but a reasonable margin.

  8. Heck, I just dig up those bags of junk bullion and carry a few spendables in my ???  Where do you carry small change that might be worth $20, like a liberty quarter without it being easily found but easy to access.  Maybe we can evolve to where we have a marsupial pouch?? 😉

    Re the AU Roo, I think I dropped it at the gun show.  What a freaking moron.  They are really nice coins

  9. @Ed_B  I sent you a link to the Cold Steel Colichemarde Dagger   Imagine a sleek old school fixed blade like this one with silver engraving, inlay and coating    That would be a first rate edged weapon that could go well with dress and casual wear.  I’ll send a note to Doc to see if he would be interested in a custom design series of Silver Doctors specialty knives.  With a suitable silver addition

    • The Chinese are smart.  The 30gr. coin will compete against the 1 Troy ounce coins.  My guess is that people will pay a higher premium for the new standard and the Chinese Mint will be selling 30gr. coins for the price of a 31.1gr coin.



  10. @Ed_B  I have a Cold Steel Colichmarde and a couple of Spartan fighting swords.  The Colichemarde is a beautiful weapon with leather scabberd, 1 foot razor sharp dual edged blade and a pommel for back handed blows. It is a real old school weapon with an elegant look anything of the modern cannot touch.

    wearing it open is legal in Nv but it might draw the sort of attention that one does not want.


    • Sounds like quite a weapon.  I have one that is similar to that in size and configuration and agree that wearing it around sends a message that is better kept to ourselves.

      My Ruger LC9 is very concealable, highly accurate, and should be able to handle most threats that occur on the streets these days.  It too can send a message but that message is only for those who seek to harm me or my family.

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