First minted in 1979 by the Royal Canadian Mint, the Canadian Maple Leaf Gold was 0.999 fine gold. Today, called the “international symbol of purity,” the Maple Leaf is 99.99% pure gold.
Because of its purity, Canadian Maple Leaf gold scratch more easily than less-pure bullion and should be handled carefully.
The government of Canada guarantees the purity, weight and legal tender value of Canadian Maple Leaf gold coins. For this reason, gold Maple Leafs have been highly regarded by international investors since their 1979 introduction.
The obverse shows a bust of the now mature Queen Elizabeth II. The word “ELIZABETH II” is at the top, with the denomination and issue date at bottom.
The reverse depicts a maple leaf, the national symbol of Canada, hence the coin’s name. The reverse also has “CANADA” and the gold amount and purity in English and French, the official languages of Canada.
These coins have legal tender status in Canada for their face values ($1, $5, $10, $20 and $50), subject to the Canadian Currency Act and the Royal Canadian Mint Act. Still used as legal tender under the Currency Act, the Maple Leafs are also categorized as “non-circulating bullion coins” under the Mint Act.
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