Secure website. Prices lock upon checkout.

Buy Certified Gold Coins

What Is a Certified Gold Coin?

A certified gold coin has been independently graded on the Sheldon Coin Grading Scale (Sheldon Scale) for condition. It is preserved in a sonically sealed, protective plastic case.

Unlike ungraded gold coins, certified gold coins have been examined and graded by a professional coin grading service. A gold bullion coin’s market price is tied to its weight in gold and the current spot price of the gold. That factor makes bullion coins typically a better choice for a liquid, short-term hold.

However, when you buy certified gold coins, you can have the opportunity for greater protection from market price fluctuations since the coin’s precious metal content is only one factor in determining its upside potential.

Furthermore, diversifying with certified gold coins allows you to implement a second layer of security that takes into account the coin’s condition, availability, and historical significance. What factors go into determining the depth of this security? Let’s recap. A certified gold coin is:

  • Independently graded on the Sheldon Scale for its condition. This scale is the de facto standard for coin grading. Almost all professional coin grading companies use it.
  • Preserved for the long term in a strong, sonically sealed plastic case to help protect its appeal.
  • Sought after for its limited nature, as there are only so many coins in a given grade.
  • Typically not subject to the same spot market volatility as an ungraded gold coin.

Call U.S. Money Reserve for special prices on certified gold coins for sale and to learn more about the role that graded coins can play in your precious metals portfolio.

Mintage and Population of Certified Gold Coins

Mintage and population: These two terms are paramount to understanding certified gold coin benefits.

  • The mintage of a government-issued gold coin refers to how many of a specific coin were initially issued by its mint of origin.
  • Population refers to the number of coins certified by an independent grading service, like Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS), at a given grade for each year, denomination, mintmark, and coin type. Only a fraction of a coin’s total mintage will ever grade a perfect PR-70, making it even harder to find high-grade coins for years with significantly lower mintages.

The grading process is important because grade determines a certified coin’s population, which can have a major impact on its growth potential.

The Coin Grading Process

A graded, or certified, gold coin has undergone careful scrutiny by an independent coin grading service to determine its overall condition. Coins are graded on a scale from 1 to 70, with a grade of 70 reserved for coins determined to be flawless. Nearly all modern certified gold coins sold by U.S. Money Reserve are graded a perfect 70 or near-perfect 69 by PCGS.

Why does coin grading matter? Grading can be critical to the upside potential of a gold coin because grade determines the population of a given type of coin and therefore its growth potential as it reacts to factors like supply and demand in the high-grade coin marketplace. Grading also serves to physically protect a coin because once a grade has been issued, a grading service sonically seals the coin inside an impact-resistant case.

What Are the Letters on a Certified Gold Coin Case?

You’ll note that there are a couple of letters on the outside of a graded coin’s case, often PR, MS, or SP. These letters precede the coin’s numeric grade and tell you more about its condition, appearance, and minting process. Was the gold planchet stamped once or twice or with particular force? Does the coin appear glossy or matte? These letters can help tell you!


Coins certified in Proof (PR) condition have a beautiful, mirror-like finish. They are typically struck multiple times to achieve this finish.

As PCGS explains, a proof coin is “usually struck from a specially prepared coin die on a specially prepared planchet. Proofs are usually given more than one blow from the dies and are usually struck with presses operating at slower speeds and higher striking pressure. Because of this extra care, proofs typically exhibit much sharper detail than regular, or business, strikes.” PCGS recognizes proofs (PR) as those struck in 1817 and later.

A great example of a certified proof gold coin is the Proof Gold American Buffalo, graded a perfect PR-70 or near-perfect PR-69 by PCGS.

Mint State

Mint State (MS) coins have the same finish as circulated-issue coins but they are not intended for regular distribution. The condition of Mint State coins can range from being heavily marked (MS-60) to showing no signs of wear (MS-70), even after 5x magnification. Only a small fraction of coins is in superb enough condition to receive the coveted museum-quality grade of MS-70. The Gold American Eagle MS-70 is an impressive example of a Mint State coin.


A specimen (SP) coin delivers an incredible visual impact. It’s typically struck twice against a matte or lined background. “SP” is more of a catchall term that refers to a number of finishes that are different than the circulation issue of a coin, but don’t necessarily fit into any Proof category, according to one popular coin grading service. This grade is typically associated with modern-day burnished coins like the 1 oz. Burnished Gold American Eagle.

Sets & Date Runs

Most precious metals coin programs are produced in various denominations. Those programs have all of the denominations for a given year combined into what is known as a set. It is quite an achievement to own a full set for a year of issue, but there is still a far greater accomplishment that rewards a precious metals owner with great profit potential. When a series of consecutive years of sets are acquired, that is called a date run—the ultimate feat. Very few date runs of a particular coin in a very high grade exist, making them an elite addition to any gold or silver owner’s portfolio.

PCGS-Certified Gold Coins for Sale

U.S. Money Reserve has a variety of PCGS-certified gold coins for sale online and over the phone. If you’ve seen us on TV, you’ll want to call for special phone prices and inventory! Some of our most popular certified gold coins include:

  • Proof Gold American Eagles: As part of the Reagan Legacy Series, these certified gold coins have a label that was signed by Michael Reagan, Ronald Reagan’s son. This elite series makes up a small percentage of the total mintage.
  • Proof Gold American Buffalos: Gold Buffalos have long been a favorite in America. This coin was first released in 2006 and was a first for the U.S. Mint. Never before had they struck a coin from one ounce of 99.99% (24k) pure gold.

Buy these certified gold coins and more online or over the phone! Shop with America’s Gold Authority®, and you can feel good knowing you’ve chosen a certified gold coin distributor that prioritizes education and puts your future first. Our clients say so!

Client-Connect Advantage: Order Now by Phone
Prefer to order by phone to lock in your price? Call now to speak with a live Account Executive.


Prices Shown Subject to Change: Due to the fluctuating nature of the gold spot price market,
price shown is subject to change. Price will lock in when you add product to your shopping cart.