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American Gold Eagle vs. American Buffalo Gold Coins: Which is the Best Investment for You?

When it comes to investing in gold coins, two prominent options often come to mind: the American Gold Eagle and the American Buffalo. Both coins are highly regarded and backed by the U.S. government, but they have distinct differences that may make one a better choice for your investment strategy. At Premier Coin Galleries, we aim to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision. In this blog post, we’ll compare these two iconic gold coins to help you decide which is the best fit for your portfolio.

The American Gold Eagle

History and Design: Introduced in 1986, the American Gold Eagle is the official gold bullion coin of the United States. The obverse side features Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ classic depiction of Lady Liberty, holding a torch in her right hand and an olive branch in her left, with the U.S. Capitol building in the background. The reverse side, designed by Miley Busiek, shows a family of bald eagles, symbolizing family strength and security.

Composition: The American Gold Eagle is struck from 22-karat gold, with the remaining alloy made up of silver and copper. This composition makes the coin more durable and resistant to scratches and wear.

Investment Benefits:

  • Government Guarantee: The U.S. government guarantees the weight, content, and purity of each American Gold Eagle, ensuring you receive a high-quality product.
  • Liquidity: Widely recognized and accepted, American Gold Eagles are highly liquid and easily tradable.
  • IRA Eligibility: These coins are eligible for inclusion in Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), offering potential tax advantages.

The American Buffalo

History and Design: First released in 2006, the American Buffalo is the first 24-karat gold coin produced by the U.S. Mint for public distribution. The obverse side features the iconic profile of a Native American, designed by James Earle Fraser, originally seen on the Buffalo Nickel. The reverse side displays a majestic American bison, a symbol of the American frontier.

Composition: The American Buffalo is struck from 99.99% pure gold (24-karat), making it one of the purest gold coins available on the market. This purity appeals to investors seeking a high gold content in their coins.

Investment Benefits:

  • Purity: The American Buffalo’s 24-karat gold composition makes it an attractive option for those who prioritize gold purity in their investments.
  • Collectibility: The design and limited mintages add a level of collectibility to the American Buffalo, potentially increasing its value over time.
  • Government Guarantee: Like the American Gold Eagle, the American Buffalo is also backed by the U.S. government for its weight, content, and purity.

Comparing the Two

Durability: Due to its 22-karat composition, the American Gold Eagle is more durable and resistant to wear and tear than the 24-karat American Buffalo. If you plan to handle your coins frequently, the Gold Eagle may be the better choice.

Purity: For investors who prioritize purity, the American Buffalo’s 99.99% gold content is unparalleled. This higher purity level can be particularly appealing to those looking to maximize their gold holdings.

Design and Aesthetic Appeal: Both coins feature iconic American imagery, but their designs appeal to different tastes. The classical beauty of the American Gold Eagle’s Lady Liberty and the symbolic bald eagles contrast with the American Buffalo’s homage to the American West with its Native American profile and bison.

Price and Availability: While both coins are widely available, their prices can differ slightly due to their gold content and market demand. The American Buffalo may command a slight premium over the Gold Eagle because of its higher purity.


Choosing between the American Gold Eagle and the American Buffalo depends on your investment goals and personal preferences. If durability and a classic design are important to you, the American Gold Eagle is an excellent choice. On the other hand, if you prioritize gold purity and a unique design that pays tribute to America’s heritage, the American Buffalo is the way to go.

At Premier Coin Galleries, we are here to help you navigate your precious metal investments. Contact us today to learn more about these iconic gold coins and to find the best investment options for your portfolio. Investing in gold is a powerful way to secure your financial future, and with our expertise, you can make informed decisions that align with your goals.

Secure your wealth. Embrace American history. Invest with Premier Coin Galleries.