Buying Mexican Gold Libertads

mexican-gold-libertad-coinThe Mexican Gold Libertad is one of the lowest minted bullion coins that is produced each year. These coins are available through many gold dealers not only in Mexico but other countries in North America and Europe in limited numbers. Despite this, it is still one of the most popular gold investment coins minted today, and has even attracted the interest of collectors because of the low supply. Unlike some other coins, the Libertad is similar to only the South African Gold Krugerrand in that it has no legal tender value issued to it by the government.

The Gold Libertad Coin is made by the Mexican Mint each year, often in numbers lower than 5,000 per release, and is backed by the Banco de Mexico. This means they are constantly going in and out of stock in many gold dealers’ inventory. Aside from uncirculated coins, the mint also makes proof versions in even more limited quantities from time to time. These releases often number in the hundreds, making them very hard to find and much more collectible.

Gold Libertad Quick Facts

  • Weights: 1/20, 1/10, 1/4, 1/2 and 1 troy ounce.
  • Gold Purity: 99.9% (1991-present) 90% (1981).
  • Mint: Made by the Mexican Mint in Mexico City on behalf of the Banco de Mexico.
  • Years Avaialble: 1981, 1991-1994, 2000, 2002-present
  • Meaning: The word “Libertad” translates to “freedom” in English, the coins signify Mexico’s liberation from Spain.

Mexican Gold Libertad Coin Mintage History

The Mexican Gold Libertad was first minted in 1981 by the Mexican Mint. That year, the mint produced over 596,000 1 oz coins, 193,000 1/2 oz coins and 313,000 1/4 oz coins; each was available in uncirculated condition and no proof coins were struck. This actually makes the 1981 release one of the easiest coins to find from the series.

Following the 1981 Gold Libertad release, the Mexican Mint did not produce the coins again until 10 years later in 1991. They would continue to strike the coins for 4 years, until 1994 when production ceased. Production picked up again in 2000 and then again in 2002. Following 2002, the coins have been minted each year up until today. There were actually more coins produced in 1981 than all other years combined. This means that even though you may see a 1981 coins and think that since it is old it is inherently more valuable, that may not be true.

Of all the gold bullion coins minted from the 1980s up until today, the production of the Mexican Gold Libertad is among the most sporadic in the coin industry. The mintage numbers have varied in the past from as high as 596,000 in 1981 to as low as 300 in 2003. The minting of Gold Libertad proof coins are even more unpredictable with the Mexican Mint producing as little as 88 coins in 1983 to as much as 1,100 in 2011. Below is a full breakdown of coin mintages from 1981 to today.

Gold Libertad Coin Mintage by Year

Year
1/20 oz
1/10 oz
1/4 oz
1/2 oz
1 oz
1981313,000193,000596,000
1982
1983
1984
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
199110,00010,00010,00010,000109,193
199265,22550,77728,10625,22046,281
199310,00010,0002,5002,50073,881
199410,00010,0002,5002,5001,000
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
20005,3003,5002,5001,5002,730
2001
20025,0005,0005,0005,00015,000
2003800300300300300
20044,0002,0001,5005003,000
20053,2005005005003,000
20063,0002,5001,5005004,000
20071,2001,2005005002,500
20088002,500800300800
20092,0009,0003,0003,0006,200
20101,5004,5001,5001,5004,000
20112,5006,5001,5001,5003,000
20122,5006,5001,5001,5003,000
20136502,1507504502,350
20141,0502,4501,0001,0004,050
20151,3004,1001,3001,1004,800

Mexican Gold Libertad Coin Types

The Mexican Gold Libertad Coin has historically been offered in just two different varieties. This includes “brilliant uncirculated” and “proof” coins. The proof version of the Libertad is the more elusive of the two types, being offered once in 1983 (1 oz) and then once more in 1989 (1/2 oz). The minting of proof coins was stopped after the 1989 release, until a 1/4 oz proof coin was offered again in 2004.

From 2005 to the current year, proof coins have been struck by the Mexican Mint in all sizes; 1/20 oz, 1/10 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/2 oz and 1 oz. This is with the exception of 2012 when no proof coins were struck.

One interesting facet of the Mexican Gold Libertad is that during the first year of production, the coins were struck on .900 fine gold. Even though the gold purity is just 90%, the coins still contained an overall gold weight of 1 troy ounce, 1/2 troy ounce and 1/4 troy ounce respectively. Each production year following that, the coins were minted using a more traditional gold purity of 99.9% or .999 fineness.

Mexican Gold Libertad Coin Sizes

In 1981 the Mexican Gold Libertad was originally offered in just three primary sizes/weights. This included the 1/4 oz, 1/2 oz and 1 oz coin. Since gold prices have increased, and demand for investment quality gold coins has also increased, the Mexican Mint has expanded the sizes to also include 1/20 oz and 1/10 oz weights in 1991 while simultaneously upping the gold purity to .999 fineness.

Each year that the Mexican Gold Libertad has been minted since 1991, they have been offered in all sizes in uncirculated condition. Each size for the year has the same design regardless of its weight, with the only difference being the “Onza” stamp which directly correlated with the weight. The specifications for each weight can be found below for the years of 1989-present:

  • 1/20 Troy Ounce
    • Pure Gold Weight: 1/20 troy oz
    • Metal Purity: 99.9% gold
    • Diameter: 13 mm
    • Thickness: 0.83 mm
  • 1/10 Troy Ounce
    • Pure Gold Weight: 1/10 troy oz
    • Metal Purity: 99.9% gold
    • Diameter: 16 mm
    • Thickness: 1 mm
  • 1/4 Troy Ounce
    • Pure Gold Weight: 1/4 troy oz
    • Metal Purity: 99.9% gold
    • Diameter: 23 mm
    • Thickness: 1.4 mm
  • 1/2 Troy Ounce
    • Pure Gold Weight: 1/2 troy oz
    • Metal Purity: 99.9% gold
    • Diameter: 29 mm
    • Thickness: 1.75 mm
  • 1 Troy Ounce
    • Pure Gold Weight: 1 troy oz
    • Metal Purity: 99.9% gold
    • Diameter: 34.5 mm
    • Thickness: 2.1 mm

Mexican Gold Libertad Coin Design

The Mexican Gold Libertad design has underwent a few changes throughout the years. It shares the same design on both its front and back as the silver variety, and each year since 1981 this has not changed. Though the design has changed, the coins have always contained the same symbolism, which includes the Mexican Coat of Arms and Winged Victoria. The specific images have changed since 1981, but the same symbols are present. This of course comes with the exception of the purity which changed from .900 to .999 in 1991.

On the current obverse of the Mexican Gold Libertad today is an image of the statue of Winged Victoria. She represents Mexican Independence, hence the name “Libertad” or “freedom.” Behind her are two of Mexico’s most recognized volcanoes, known as Popocat├ępetl and Iztaccihuatl. Above the image of Winged Victoria is the coin’s weight, metal composition, year and metal fineness. This info reads “[number] Onza [metal name in Spanish] Pura [year] Ley .999. For example the 2016 1 oz Mexican Gold Libertad Coin shows: “1 ONZA ORO PURO 2016 LEY .999.”

mexican-gold-libertad-obverse

The reverse of the Libertad Gold Coins have the current Mexican Coat of Arms at their center. Surrounding it are other previous Mexican Coat of Arms images. Around the central Coat of Arms are the words “ESTADOS UNIDOS MEXICANOS.”

mexican-gold-libertad-reverse

Buying Gold Libertads Online

Because of the low mintage from 1991 forward, the Mexican Gold Libertad can sometimes be hard to come by. This makes the internet one of the best places to shop for them, since your resources and buying options are virtually unlimited. You can find these coins on large gold dealer websites like APMEX, Golden Eagle Coins, Gainesville Coins and JM Bullion among others. For those who are looking for specific years or varieties, you can also check sites like eBay where private sellers often place the coins up for sale.