The Exchange : It's time for the year of the horse

It's time for the year of the horse

This year in the Chinese Zodiac calendar is the year of the horse.  Those born in the years 2014, 2002, 1990, 1978, 1966, 1954, 1942, etc. are born in the year of the horse. They are said to be energetic, active, master problem solvers, agile, forgiving and to have a sunny disposition. I was born in the year of the horse, 2002.

What mints are doing to celebrate

To celebrate the year of the horse, many mints around the world are making coins to celebrate it. The main mints striking these coins are the Perth mint in Australia, the Royal Canadian mint in Canada, the Royal mint in Britain and the mint in Tokelau, but I will only be writing about the Perth mint and the Tokelau mint coins.

Perth Mint horse coins

The Perth mint makes many gold and silver year of the horse bullion coins with mintages that are very limited and in many different sizes. The silver horse coin comes in sizes of ½ ounce, 1 ounce, 2 ounce, 5 ounce, 10 ounce and even kilogram size (or 32.15 ounces) and 10 kilo siz (321.5 ounces). They also come in different finishes: there is uncirculated, proof, colorized, high relief, gilded (part of the coin is covered in gold) and jeweled eye, which is only on the kilo coin. The sizes for their gold coins are 1/20 ounce, 1/10 ounce, ¼ ounce, ½ ounce, 1 ounce, 2 ounce, 10 ounce and kilo size (again, 32.15 ounces).

On the obverse of both silver and gold coin is a bust portrait of Elizabeth II.  The reverse of the silver coins shows two horses by a stream. One has its head up and is looking around while the other has its head dipped down to drink. It is inscribed with the Chinese symbol for horse and "Year of the Horse." The Perth mintmark is on the reverse to the right of the horses. On the reverse of the gold coins is a horse galloping in the wind. The Chinese symbol for horse is shown and it is inscribed with "Year of the Horse." The Perth mintmark is off to the left of the horse.

Tokelau horse coins

2014_s $5_gilt _raw _obv _web

2014_s $5_gilt _raw _rev _web

The Tokelau mint is only making a 1 ounce year of the horse coin, but the coin has three different finishes: uncirculated, proof and reverse proof. The uncirculated coins have a mintage of 250,000. The proof coins have a mintage of 2,500 and the reverse proofs have a mintage of 50,000. The design of the coin on the obverse of the coin is a mare with a foal at its side standing in tall grass. The year 2014 is in a box above the foal's head. On the reverse of the coin is the Queen of England, Elizabeth the II.


Photos courtesy of the Royal Mint

Written by Eric Niedzielski at 00:00
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