Are you interested in kickstarting your precious metal collection with easily one of the most famous gold coins out there? We are, of course, talking about the gold sovereigns, and here at Gold Investments, we have both full sovereigns and half sovereign gold coins available to purchase. You’ll find these on our website, along with live online market prices that continually update.  

Place an order today with the most trusted gold bullion dealer in the UK, and you’ll receive your gold sovereigns by UK insured delivery. We also deliver anywhere in the world. All UK deliveries are FREE for orders of £1,000 or more. Alternatively, let us keep your gold coins in our secure, certified storage vaults. The choice is yours! 

For unbeatable advice, get in touch with our knowledgeable team today by calling 020 7283 7752. And don’t forget to check out our blog for even more useful tips, tricks, and insights. 

A Guide to the Gold Sovereign

Gold Investments

The gold sovereign is easily one of the most well-known gold coins that had the honour of being England’s first coin to be valued at one pound and one shilling. This was despite the coin itself having no mark of value on its face. The original sovereign gold coin was first issued in 1489 and is not the same as the one that can be found today on our website.   

More information about the history of gold sovereigns can be found below. However, for this article, we shall discuss the pre-decimal Sovereign Queen Elizabeth, as this is the coin you’ll find on our website.  

From 1979 onwards, gold sovereigns were no longer in circulation and instead issued for the bullion market. Half and full sovereign gold coins were also struck by the Royal Mint in proof condition for collectors, with the issuance of proof coins occurring annually. 

In 1998, the fourth bust of the Queen was designed by Ian Rank-Broadley, and this would be used on the sovereign for the next 17 years until 2015. Following the suspension of striking bullion sovereigns in 1982, the practice was reinstated again in 2000. It continues to this day, with various design alterations occurring over the last 21 years. 

Here at Gold Investments, we stock both the 2021 variation as well as sovereign gold coins with various dates. The 2021 versions are newly struck, making them a great choice for investors, while the older coins will appeal to investors and collectors alike. Each of our gold sovereigns is high quality and boasts a purity of 22-carats. 

Plus, the coins are VAT-exempt in the UK and are technically considered legal tender despite no longer being in circulation. As such, they are tax-free and capital gains. 

History of the Gold Sovereign

Sovereign gold coins have a long and distinguished history that begins in 1489. The first gold sovereigns were minted during the reign of Henry VII and were very different to the gold coins we know and love today. This is largely because the name ‘Sovereign’ at the time was given to five different coins that existed through Henry VII’s reign.  

The reason for this was that Henry was attempting to establish a gold coinage not previously seen in England. It was because of the skill and ingenuity of his metal engravers that the legacy of the gold sovereign has persisted until today. 

The sovereign is one of the world’s oldest gold coins still in circulation. It was considered legal tender up until the point it was decided that it would be unwise to have the country’s gold tied up in the general currency. This attitude changed at the end of The First World War, however. 

Jump forward a few centuries, and we have the pre-decimal Sovereign Queen Elizabeth, a coin quite different to what was introduced way back when. This coin sported a portrait created by Mary Gillick that persisted until 1974, when, at which point, it was replaced by a version created by Arnold Machin. 

This version of the portrait had been designed six years prior, in 1968, and at the time was considered “racy” by Sir John Betjeman. Despite its controversial status, it was a beloved portrait as it depicted the monarch in a less formal way. 

In 1979, the Sovereign Queen Elizabeth II became the official gold bullion and remains popular among collectors to this day. In 1985, the controversial Machin portrait was replaced by the third version designed by Raphael Maklouf. Sovereign gold coins would be released at random in the ensuing years, and the third version would eventually be replaced in 1998 with Rank-Broadley’s design. 

Today, sovereign gold coins enjoy a stellar reputation among collectors and investors. A lot of this is to do with the coin’s historical value and the reputation of The Royal Mint. 

What Exactly is the Gold Sovereign? 

The sovereign is a gold coin used in the UK that has a nominal value of one pound sterling. Originally introduced in the 15th century, the coin has a long and distinguished history, making it a highly sought-after piece among investors and collectors. 

Originally considered legal tender, sovereign gold coins were circulated widely, accepted in Britain and throughout the British Empire. However, today, sovereign gold coins are considered bullion coins. They are held in collections or compose gold portfolios, and like other gold coins, possess an inherent value that paper-based currencies lack. 

The modern sovereign was named after the English gold sovereign, last minted in 1603 that later originated as part of the Great Recoinage of 1816

Since its introduction in 1817, sovereign gold coins have sported various mint marks. The following is also true of gold sovereigns: 

  • Value – One Pound Sterling 
  • Mass – 7.98805g 
  • Diameter – 22.0mm 
  • Thickness – 1.52mm 
  • Edge – Milled 
  • Composition – .917 gold, .083 copper or other metals 
  • Gold – 0.2354 troy oz 
  • Years of Minting – 1817 – Present 

On the Gold Investments website, you’ll find both full and half sovereigns, including ones struck in 2021 and ones struck in various years. As such, mint marks will vary.  

It should be noted that, while sovereign gold coins are no longer circulated as currency, they are considered legal tender. This status means that they are tax-free and capital gains, making them a great investment choice for both collectors as well as investors keen to diversify their portfolios. 

Where Does it Come From? 

Gold sovereign coins are bullion coins that were first struck in 1817 here in the United Kingdom. They are named after the English gold sovereign that was first struck in England back in 1489. Gold sovereigns are considered to be one of the world’s oldest gold coins and are deemed highly popular among investors and collectors alike.

Is the Gold Sovereign a Good Investment?

Without a doubt, gold sovereigns are one of the best investments you can make and a worthwhile addition to any portfolio. Containing just over ¼ of an ounce of 22-carat gold, the coin is steeped in history. Compared with another popular British coin – the Britannia – the sovereign gold coins are smaller and have a lower purity. Despite this, they are a solid investment and are purchased by thousands of collectors and investors every year. 

Sovereign gold coins hold a rather unique status among bullion coins. Most bullion coins were struck from the 1970s onwards and so only boast up to 50 years of history. In comparison, gold sovereigns boast a history that stretches back more than 200 years. In fact, it goes back even further if you consider that the “modern” sovereign was named after the original English gold sovereign from 1489. 

Gold sovereigns possess excellent numismatic value, making them an investment that goes beyond the metal value, making them even more of a desirable purchase for collectors and investors. 

Whether you’re a numismatic (collector) or a financial investor, gold sovereigns are almost a mandatory addition to any portfolio. For investors, in particular, sovereign gold coins are a wise investment as they offer a convenient store of gold. This is useful during economic downturns that can significantly devalue modern currencies. 

Unlike most other bullion coins, sovereign gold coins are capital gains, VAT- and tax-free thanks to their status as British legal tender. Even a small number of sovereign gold coins can help diversify a portfolio, making it far more resistant to volatile financial markets. 

If you’re a collector, you’ll likely be drawn to rarer, historic coins. However, if you’re simply looking to build a financial portfolio, best-value, low-grade sovereigns that are priced at a little over their pure gold value are the way to go. 

How Much Is It Worth Today? 

Any curious collector or investor is undoubtedly interested in how much their portfolio is worth. The problem comes when searching online for guidance, as quite often, the values you’ll find are wildly inaccurate. For one, they don’t take into account the current market value of gold. 

The face value of gold sovereign coins is one pound sterling. That’s because when the coin was in circulation, this was its numerical value. But before you question what all the fuss is about or why you’re paying so much for a coin worth only £1, consider that this isn’t its true value. 

Gold sovereigns are among the most famous gold coins in the world and have been around for a very long time. Uncirculated gold coins are valued based on their pure gold content, so you can expect to sell your coins for a lot more than £1 apiece. 

Before we delve further into this, let’s first consider what factors can affect the value of your sovereign gold coins. Discerning the true value is not as easy as you might think, as while some sovereigns are worth their bullion value, others have a much larger value. This true value depends on various factors, such as: 

  • How Many Coins Remain from That Mint of That Year 
  • How Many Coins Were Produced at That Mint in That Year 
  • Is the Coin a Proof Issue Coin or a Bullion Coin? 
  • What Condition is the Coin in? 
  • When the Coin Was Minted 
  • Which Royal Mint Branch Produced It 

It’s worth noting that sovereign gold coins are worth their weight in gold. This is what we call the bullion value. A sovereign gold coin will weigh around 7.98g and is minted in 22-carat gold. As such, it is composed of up to 91.67% fine gold, meaning that each sovereign gold coin contains 7.32g of fine gold. 

To ascertain the true value (bullion value), simply multiply the spot price at that time by the fine gold content. Once again, it’s worth noting that market prices change by the minute. Thankfully, our website has a live online gold market price tracker, so you’ll always know what the up-to-the-minute gold market price is. 

How to Invest in the Gold Sovereign

Investing in gold sovereigns is as easy as clicking on our website or picking up the phone. Here at Gold Investments, we stock a fantastic selection of gold coins that are just perfect for investors, and even collectors will find something that catches the eye.  

Included in our range of gold coins are full and half sovereigns, with current versions struck in 2021 and ones struck on various dates. As with all our gold coins, the low premiums and excellent value of these bullion coins make them a flexible way to realise any investment. 

All our gold coins are VAT-exempt in the UK and, in the case of our gold sovereigns and Britannia coins, capital gains and tax-free. Every single bullion coin that we supply has been manufactured by the world’s leading mints, including The Royal Mint, so you know you’re buying something authentic. 

To invest, simply select the coins you desire – our team will be happy to advise you in this area – then add these to your basket. Our live market prices will help you gauge whether it’s a good time to buy. Unlike gold bars, gold coinage is usually stable, making it less complicated to research gold coin value comparisons. To make things easier, we offer a price limit alert system that’ll notify you when your desired price has been reached. 

Once you click the purchase option, your spot price is fixed. The price will remain fixed for a set period, giving you plenty of time to decide and finalise the transaction. We will require payment within two working days; otherwise, the fixed spot price will no longer be available. The same applies if you’re selling gold – once the spot price is locked in, we’ll need to receive the gold within two working days. 

You can buy and sell bullion coins and other precious metals from our website 24/7, or you can pop into our London office if you prefer. Once you’ve completed your purchase, we can send you your gold via UK insured delivery, or we can send it anywhere in the world. Delivery is completely free in the UK on orders over £1,000 (£10 delivery fee applies to orders under £1,000). Overseas delivery charges apply. 

Alternatively, we can store your bullion coins in one of our certified London storage vaults. Our pricing starts at just £4 per ounce per year and a minimum charge of £25 per year applies. 

Other Gold Investment Options

In addition to being the go-to bullion supplier for gold sovereigns, we also have other gold investment options available. These include: 

Gold Bars

Gold bars might seem rather intimidating, especially if you’ve only purchased bullion coins before. In fact, gold bars can often be seen as a volatile investment in the short term, which is why coins are a better investment if you want to invest and sell quickly. But bars maintain their value long-term and are a great option to consider if you want to truly diversify your portfolio. 

Unlike paper-denominated currencies, gold holds its wealth and, as such, many investors keep a store of gold to fall back on in case of economic hardship. Gold offers a safe haven in financially troubling times as it’s impervious to political or economic uncertainty. In a world where nothing is certain, gold provides a safety net. 

At Gold Investments, we stock a wide range of gold bars at low premiums, so there are options to cater to any investor’s requirements. We have gold bars ranging from entry-level 5g options to massive 1kg bricks. We also have blemished and unallocated gold bars available to purchase. 

All our gold bars are pure 24-carat gold (999.9) and are produced by London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) approved refiners, such as: 

  • Metalor 
  • Heraeus 
  • Umicore 
  • PAMP 

As with bullion coins, when you spend £1,000 or more, you’ll receive FREE insured UK delivery. The usual charge of £10 applies to orders under £1,000; plus, overseas delivery charges apply too. To find out what these are for your country, contact our office today.  

Alternatively, store your gold bars in our certified London storage vaults – we offer sizeable discounts for kilo and 100g bars at £50 and £12 off respectively). While in our vaults, your precious metals will be secure, fully insured, and audited by an independent party. This means that, should you choose to sell your gold at the last minute, you can do so. 

No more waiting around for a bank to open or taking your gold somewhere to be audited.

Gold Britannia Coins

The Britannia is one of several bullion coins available here at Gold Investments. This coin boasts timeless beauty and reliability in turbulent times where political and economic unrest is certain. We have two Britannia coins available – 1oz and 1/10 of an ounce

Both coins boast a purity of 24-carats, with the 1oz and 1/10oz coins containing 1 ounce and 1/10 of an ounce of gold content, respectively. As with gold sovereigns, Britannia bullion coins are capital gains, VAT-exempt and tax-free as they are technically considered legal tender. 

The first Britannia coin was minted in 1987 and today are available with 0.9999 fine gold purity. Coins minted prior to 2013 had a millesimal fineness of .917 (22-carat), with a non-gold component that consisted of copper in 1989 and silver from 1990 onwards. 

The coins are adorned with the legendary figure of Britannia. This figure was first found adorning Roman coins as far back as the 2nd century AD. Over the centuries, the figure of Britannia has come to symbolise Britain’s integrity and strength.  

At Gold Investments, we stock the Britannia bullion coin sporting a design fashion by Phillip Nathan, a design that’s recognised the world over as the flagship bullion of The Royal Mint

Gold Krugerrand Coins

Another of the many gold coins we have available here at Gold Investments is the Krugerrand. The Krugerrand has the distinction of being the first-ever gold coin to contain exactly one ounce of fine gold. It is arguably one of the most iconic gold coins of its era and was introduced as a vehicle for private gold ownership. 

It achieved huge success in this regard and, by 1980, around 90% of the global market was comprised of the various Krugerrand nominations. It was the Krugerrand’s success that led to an uptick in other countries minting their own gold bullion coins. 

Krugerrand gold coins are 22-carat and contain up to one troy ounce of pure gold. At Gold Investments, we also stock slightly more inexpensive options, which are the 1/2oz, 1/4oz, and 1/10oz versions. These contain less gold content though they still retain the 22-carat purity.  

What distinguishes the Krugerrand from other gold coins is the fact that it’s consistently valued at above premium. As such, a higher potential ROI is possible the larger the coin is. If you have a limited-edition release, the effect is magnified further. What this means, however, is that the Krugerrand is a solid long-term investment that will hold its value. 

It’s worth being cautious as many small, private mints try to replicate the Krugerrand’s design, producing a coin of inferior quality lacking the authenticity and value of the original. The good news is that all the Krugerrand coins you buy from Gold Investments are authentic, produced in certified mints. 

Why Use Gold Investments?

Gold Investments was formed 40 years ago in 1981 and today is headed up by Mike Temple. Under Mike’s leadership, Gold Investments has grown in popularity and trust and is now one of the oldest and most respected UK gold bullion dealers. What we don’t know about the buying and selling of precious metals isn’t worth knowing. We offer sound and impartial advice to help investors make the right choice. 

We have a fantastic range of gold and silver bars and coins, including gold sovereigns. So, whether you’re considering making a start on your portfolio or wish to diversify an existing portfolio, we can help. You’ll also find plenty of useful insights by reading our blogs – we publish regularly, so make sure to keep a lookout. 

Become a Gold Club member and stay in the know with regular updates on the industry. Plus, access exclusive ways to maximise your gold and silver investments. 

Remember that with Gold Investments, your purchases will always be covered, whether in transit or stored in our storage vaults. We offer insured UK deliveries that are completely free on orders of £1,000 or more. And our certified storage vaults keep your purchases safe, secure, and insured; your bars and coins will even be audited on a regular basis by an independent party. 

Lastly, we accept all payment methods except credit cards, making us a convenient place to buy gold and silver from. In short, we offer a complete service that cannot be beaten. 

Contact Us

So, if you’re looking to buy gold coins, specifically sovereign gold coins, you’re in luck, as you’ve come to the number one gold bullion in the UK. Full sovereign gold coins are by no means the extent of our offering as we also stock many other gold and silver coins. We also buy and sell gold and silver bars, so if you’re looking to build a new investment portfolio or kick your current portfolio into gear, we’ve got you covered. 

We’re the oldest and most respected gold bullion dealer in the UK. Full sovereign gold coins are also among the most popular gold coins and are considered highly sought-after investments. We at Gold Investments have been trading since 1981 and remain committed to furnishing customers with only the best precious metals manufactured by trusted refineries and mints. 

To learn more, call our gold bullion experts now on 020 7283 7752, fill out our online contact form or email [email protected].