Sizes, weights, purity, and definition of investment gold bars.
According to UK HM Customs & Excise:-
"Investment gold (other than investment gold coins) is defined as: "gold of a purity not less than 995 thousandths that is in the form of a bar, or a wafer, of a weight accepted by the bullion markets".
Principal Sizes and Weights
For the purposes of this definition bars and wafers are commonly traded in the following weights:
Because eBay do not permit use to use any html code in this page, we are unable to format the following table. It may therefore not format as clearly as the version on our website.
Unit Weights Available Kilos Grams Troy Ounces
London Good Delivery Bar 12.5 Kilogram 12.5 12,500 400
Kilogram Bars 1 Kg 1 1000 32.15
Grams 500 gram 0.5 500 16.07
Grams 250 gram 0.25 250 8.04
Grams 100 gram 0.1 100 3.22
Grams 50 gram 0.05 50 1.61
Grams 20 gram 0.02 20 0.64
Grams 10 gram 0.01 10 0.32
Grams 5 gram 0.005 5 0.16
Grams 2.5 gram 0.0025 2.5 0.08
Grams 1 gram 0.001 1 0.03
Ounces 100 ounce 3.11 3110 100
Ounces 10 ounce 0.31 311 10
Ounces 5 ounce 0.16 155.6 5
Ounces 1 ounce 0.03 31.1035 1
Ounces ½ ounce 15.56 .5
Ounces ¼ ounce 7.78 .25
Taels 10 taels 0.37 371 11.913
Taels 5 taels 0.185 185 5.9565
Taels 1 tael 0.371 37.05 1.1913
Tolas 10 tola 0.117 116.6 3.75
Tolas 5 tola 0.0585 58.3 1.875
(1oz = 31.1035 grams)
(1 tael = 1.1913 oz)
(1 tola = 180 grains troy = 0.375 oz)
London Good Delivery Bars
The only size bar normally used in major international markets is the London Good Delivery Bar, which as you can see from the above table is 400 ounces or 12.5 kilograms. Most gold stored by central banks is in this form.
At over £100,000 each, these are not a convenient size for most small investors.
One Kilo Bars are a convenient weight, being a nice round number, so being easy to track the price. Because they are worth over £10,000 each they are above the UK notification level, so it is perhaps natural that smaller sizes will be more popular.
Smaller bars, such as fractional kilo bars, and one ounce bars, combine convenient size with reasonably low premium.
Very Small Bars
Weights such as one gram are so small that the cost of production dictates that their premium over gold content is too high for prudent investors, but they can make attractive gift items.
As we are frequently asked about the dimensions of gold bars, we have provided this information on our Dimensions of Gold Bars page. We are not permitted to include a link.
Gold Bars for Collectors
There is now a collectors market for different or unusual bars. We usually have a selection.
Circular Gold Bars
One solution to the question of which size bar to purchase, is to buy modern one ounce bullion coins. It is sensible to consider them as being one ounce circular bullion bars, guaranteed by a government rather than a refiner.
Because coins are mass produced, and very efficiently so, they are available at very competitive prices compared with similar size bars.
Because gold coins are almost universally recognised, they are also easy to resell.
It's worth looking at our Gold Coin Selector page.
We strongly recommend you only buy from a reputable source.
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This guide has been contributed by Lawrence Chard of Chard Coins. Any opinions are our own. Please contact us if you notice any errors or omissions on this page.
We hope you find this guide interesting and informative.