Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf Coins

platinum coin icon Canada flag icon Platinum Maple Leafs - the world's best-selling platinum coins in 2012

The Canadian Platinum Maple Leafs are Canada's official platinum bullion coins. They are minted by the Royal Canadian Mint out of 99.95% pure platinum. All Maple Leaf coins, whether out of gold, silver, platinum or palladium, bear the same iconic design. The Platinum Maple Leaf coins were introduced to the market in the same year - 1988 - as the Silver Maple Leafs. Up to six different denominations between 1 oz and 1/20 oz existed at some point. Since 2009, only the 1 oz denomination is produced annually.

The legal tender coins are offered with brilliant uncirculated and proof (including reverse proof) finishes. In 2012, Platinum Maple Leafs were the world's best-selling platinum bullion coins. Ready availability and relatively lower premiums make these coins very popular among investors in addition to their high mintage quality. The Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coins are permitted to be included in Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA's).

reverse side of the 2015 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2015 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coin

Coin Specifications

Weight Face Value Purity Diameter x Thickness
1 oz CAD $ 50 99.95% 30 x 2.62 mm
1/2 oz* CAD $ 20 99.95% 25 x 2.23 mm
1/4 oz* CAD $ 10 99.95% 20 x 1.78 mm
1/10 oz* CAD $ 5 99.95% 16 x 1.13 mm
1/15oz** CAD $ 2 99.95% ? x ? mm
1/20oz*** CAD $ 1 99.95% 14.1 x 0.92 mm

Mintage:*1988-1999,2002;**1994;***1993-1999,2002

Reverse Design of Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf Proof Coins 2012 - 2016

Design

The Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coins display the same design as all the other Maple Leaf coins, no matter which precious metal they're made of. The intricately etched Maple Leaf on the reverse side gives the coins their name. Around the central Maple Leaf design are engraved the coin's weight, platinum purity and "CANADA" in big letters right above the leaf. A micro-engraved maple leaf privy mark first appeared on the reverse of the coins in 2015. That same year also saw the introduction of radial lines on the surface of both sides. Both of these details are added security features that the Royal Canadian Mint decided to implement to prevent counterfeiting.

The obverse side of all Canadian Maple Leaf coins features Queen Elizabeth II's right-facing portrait. The first two years of mintage, the Queen was depicted as a 39-year-old. In 1990, a switch to a newer portrait was made. That 2nd portrait that showed a 64-year-old Queen was used on the obverse of the coins until 2002. When the Canadian Platinum Maple Leafs were minted again in 2009, albeit only in the 1 oz denomination from then on, the portrait was changed to the current 3rd version. Susanna Blunt's currently employed design shows a 79-year-old Queen. That design had already been used on the silver coins since 2004. "ELIZABETH II" is inscribed above the portrait and the coin's CAD $ 50 face value and year of mintage are inscribed underneath it.

History

The Royal Canadian Mint had organized a special striking ceremony for the 22nd of September 1988. The first ever Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf was struck at this occasion (also the first Canadian Silver Maple Leaf). Four denominations of 1 oz, 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz and 1/10 oz were offered initially. The 1/20 oz coin was added in 1993 and even an unusually-sized 1/15 oz coin was minted for one year (1994).

The world's platinum market began contracting around the period of the millenium change. Annual mintage of the coins stopped after 1999 with the exception of 2002 when 500 sets of special Hologram Platinum Maple Leafs were minted. However, revived interest in platinum saw the Platinum Maple Leaf make a comeback in 2009, albeit only in the 1 oz denomination from then on. The 1 oz Platinum Maple Leafs were the world's best-selling platinum bullion coins in 2012.

The only design changes that affected the coins were when the portrait of the Queen was changed in 1990 and again in 2009. The radial lines and the micro-engraved privy mark that were introduced in 2015 also changed the look of the coins a bit. However, they were mainly introduced as added security features.

Mintages

Mintage figures for the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz platinum coin vary between 3,248 coins (1999) and 62,273 coins (1996). Mintage of 'regular' coins stopped after 1999 and only resumed in 2009 (but only 1 oz coins). In between, the only Platinum Maple Leafs that were issued were the special hologram coins that were issued in 2002.

The mintage record across all denominations is held by the 1/4 oz Platinum Maple Leafs that were issued 87,200 times in 1988. The mintage low are the 460 coins of 1/20 oz that were minted in 1995.

reverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coin

Canadian Gold Maple Leafs

The Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coins are produced by the Royal Canadian Mint in a wide variety of denominations since 1979. The 99.99% pure coins count among the most popular gold bullion coins worldwide (99.9% purity between 1979 and 1981). Some special editions of the Canadian Maple Leaf gold coins are even minted out of 99.999% pure gold. Radial lines as well as a textured maple leaf privy mark also makes the coins extremely hard to counterfeit. The Canadian Gold Maple Leafs are available with brilliant uncirculated and proof finishes in a wide range of denominations between 1 gram and 1 oz.

The Canadian Gold Maple Leaf page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

reverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin

Canadian Silver Maple Leafs

The Canadian Maple Leaf coins are also produced out of silver since 1988. The legal tender coins with a face value of CAD $ 5 have the same design as the gold version of the coins. Whereas most other silver bullion coins are 99.9% pure, Canadian Silver Maple Leafs are minted out of 99.99% pure silver. That is a major reason why Silver Maple Leafs count among the most popular silver bullion coins worldwide. Only one denomination of 1 oz is offered by the Royal Canadian Mint for now. The standard brilliant uncirculated finish has been upgraded in 2014 and includes radial lines from the coin's center as well as a micro-engraved laser mark since then.

The Canadian Silver Maple Leaf page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

reverse side of the 2015 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Palladium Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2015 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Palladium Maple Leaf coin

Canadian Palladium Maple Leafs

The 99.95% fine Canadian Palladium Maple Leafs were the first palladium coins ever minted by the Royal Canadian Mint and the world's first regularly issued palladium bullion coins. The coins were first minted in November 2005 and production continued uninterrupted until 2007. After that, Palladium Maple Leaf coins were again minted in 2009 and 2015. That last year also saw the introduction of two new security features, radial lines as well as a special privy mark with the laser-engraved year of mintage. These features were implemented to prevent counterfeiting. The coins are only available with a brilliant uncirculated finish in the single available denomination of 1 oz. Their official face value is CAD $ 50 and they have legal tender status in Canada.

The Canadian Palladium Maple Leaf page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

Special Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf Editions and Sets

5-Coin Hologram Platinum Maple Leaf Set 2002

5-Coin Hologram Set 2002

total platinum weight: 1.9 oz

This special set includes the 99.95% pure brilliant uncirculated 1 oz, 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 oz and 1/20 oz Platinum Maple Leaf coins. The iconic maple leaf on the reverse side of the coins has a holographic design. 500 such sets were issued in 2002 and these were the only Platinum Maple Leafs issued that year (and the only Hologram Platinum Maple Leafs ever).

1 oz reverse proof Platinum Maple Leaf coin 2016

Special Proof Coins 2012 - 2016

Purity: 99.95%

Weight Face Value Diameter x Thickness
1 oz CAD $ 300 30 x 2.62 mm

annual mintage: 250 coins

Canadian artists created the special reverse design on these proof coins. Most of these coins are a part of the "Maple Leaf Forever" series. The 2013 proof coin was dedicated to the 25th Anniversary of the Platinum Maple Leaf though. Some of these special limited edition issues contain selective gold plating, the 2016 reverse proof issue even selective silver, pink gold and yellow gold plating.