Allowable IRA Precious Metals (IRS Approved)

Not all coins and bars are permitted in a precious metals IRA (also called a gold IRA).

The first stipulation for gold, silver, platinum, and palladium being held in this kind of self-directed IRA is purity. Silver coins and bars must be 99.99% pure, and gold, platinum, and palladium coins and bars must be 99.95% pure.

The second stipulation for assets in this kind of IRA is that coins may not be collectibles. (See below for more information.)

Precious metals bars included in a self-directed IRA are governed by additional IRS requirements. Bars must be produced by certified or accredited manufacturers, assayers, or refiners. Bodies that grant accreditation include NYSE/Liffe, TOCOM, COMEX, NYMEX, ISO 9000, and LME.

Small bullion precious metal bars must meet certain size specifications (except 1000-ounce silver bars, 400-ounce gold bars, 50-ounce platinum bars, 100-ounce gold bars, and 100-ounce palladium bars).

The following are lists of coins and bars allowed in precious metals IRAs.

Checklist of Gold, Silver, Platinum, and Palladium Precious Metals Allowed in an IRA

Gold Bars & Gold Coins Allowed in an IRA 

  • American Gold Eagle and Buffalo Coins
  • Australian Gold Kangaroo Coins
  • Chinese Panda Gold Coins
  • Canadian Maple Leaf Gold Coins
  • Australian Lunar Series Coins
  • Austrian Philharmonic Bullion Coins
  • British Britannia (2013 and newer) Gold Coins
  • Credit Suisse-PAMP Suisse Gold Bars
gold bars in an IRA

Additional IRS-approved gold bars for a precious metals IRA retirement account include Johnson Matthey gold bars, the Valcambi gold Combibar (which is cast to be easily separated into small one-gram bars), and Credit Suisse gold bars.

Silver Coins Allowed in an IRA 

  • Austrian Vienna Philharmonic Coins
  • America the Beautiful
  • British Britannia
  • Australian Kookaburra
  • Mexican Libertad
  • Canadian Maple Leaf Bullion
  • Chinese Panda

Acceptable silver bars in a precious metals IRA include PAMP Suisse silver bars, 10-ounce Sunshine bars, A-Mark bars, Royal Canadian Mint bars, and Walking Liberty, OPM, and RCM bars.

Platinum and Palladium Bars and Coins Permitted in an IRA

  • Isle of Man Platinum Coins
  • American Eagle Platinum Coins
  • Australian Koala Platinum Coins
  • Canadian Maple Leaf Platinum and Palladium Coins
  • Russian Ballerina Palladium Coins

Platinum bars acceptable by the Internal Revenue Service in a precious metals self-directed IRA include Credit Suisse, PAMP Suisse, Engelhard, and Valcambi bars.

Baird and Credit Suisse palladium bars are permitted in a precious metals IRA.

Not Allowed in an IRA: Collectible Coins

Rare and collectible coins are not permitted in a gold IRA. These specific pieces are also not permitted:

  • Mexican Gold 50, Colombian, and Chilean 100 Pesos
  • Dutch 10 Guilders
  • Somalia Elephants
  • Russian George the Victorious
  • Hungarian Korona and Austrian Coronas
  • Italian Liras
  • South African Krugerrands
  • Belgian, Swiss 20, and French 20 Francs
  • British Brittanias and Sovereigns
  • German Marks
  • Israel Tower of David
  • French Napoleon
  • Swiss Vreneli
  • USSR Chevronet

Investors should always check with their precious metals IRA firm advisors before attempting to add coin to their self-directed individual retirement accounts.

Not Allowed in an IRA: Popular Bullion, Coins, and Bars

Gold Silver Platinum Palladium Not Permitted in a Precious Metals IRA

Commemorative, numismatic, and collector's coins may not be held as assets in a precious metals IRA. They are simply collectibles and are not meant to be held as precious metals investments in an IRA.

Gold coins to avoid as precious metals investments in an IRA include:

  • Soviet and Russian Chervonets
  • US Double Eagles
  • Italian 20 Liras
  • US Liberties
  • Sierra Leone Lion Head
  • Saudi Arabia One Guinea
  • Macau Year of the Monkey
  • Argentina 5 Pesos
  • Colombia 5 Pesos
  • Chilean 100 Pesos
  • Chinese Pandas
  • Israel Tower of David
  • UK Britannia
  • Somalia Elephant
  • Singapore 100 Singold
  • Uruguay 5 Pesos
  • Dutch 10 Guilder
  • Mexican Pesos
  • Swiss Vreneli
  • UK Queen's Beasts
  • Tristan Da Cunha Double Sovereign
  • French Napoleons
  • Bhutan 1 Sertum Jigme Dorji Wangchuck
  • Turkey 100 Kurush
  • Brazil 20,000 Reis
  • The Cayman Islands $25
  • Guatemala 1/2-ounce Tecun Uman
  • Peru 100,000 Soles
  • Peru 1 Libra
  • Venezuela 60 Bolivares
  • Dominican Republic 30 Pesos
  • Netherlands 10 Guilders
  • Belgium 20 Francs Leopold II
  • Denmark 10 Kroner Nightingale
  • Denmark 10 Kroner Snow Queen
  • Sweden 10 Kronor
  • Cook Islands $100 Armillary Valcambi
  • Isle of Man various
  • Greek 20 Drachmai George I
  • German various
  • Serbia 10 Dinara
  • Yugoslavia Dukat Alexander
  • Russia 15 Roubles Nicholas II and Chervonets
  • Gibraltar 1/10 oz Royal Cherubs
  • Venice Zecchino Ducat Pietro Grimani, Ludovico Manin
  • Vatican City 100 Lire Pope Pius XI
  • Sardinia 20 Lire Carlo Felice
  • Poland 10 Zlotych Boleslaw
  • Monaco 100 Francs Albert I, 20 Francs Charles III
  • Ukraine 1/4-ounce Archangel Michael
  • Portugal 10,000 Reis King Luiz I, 5,000 Reis King Luiz I
coins not allowed in an IRA

Coins of silver to avoid as precious metal investments in an IRA include:

  • New Zealand Kiwis
  • Andorra silver coins
  • Cook Island Bounty
  • Somalia Elephant
  • Isle of Man angle
  • Chinese Panda
  • UK Britannia
  • Niue Hawksbill Turtle
  • Fiji Great Wave
  • Soviet and Russian silver coins
  • Swiss Francs
  • French silver coins
  • South African Pel's Fishing Owl
  • Great Britain Queen's Beasts