Figure of the month: 1,000 kg

News Arnulf Hinkel – 03.11.2016

Hard to believe but true: the largest gold bullion in the world actually weighs no less than a tonne with a purity of 99.99 percent. It was produced in 2011 at the Perth Mint, Australia, and sets an absolute world record. By comparison, the second-largest gold coin in the world, the Canadian 100 kg "Maple Leaf" gold bullion, weighs just a tenth of it. But let us go back to the Australian record holding gold bullion titled "Red Cangaroo 2012", appropriately showing a giant Red Cangaroo (Macropus rufus) on the obverse, the world's largest living marsupial, surrounded by stylized sunrays.

The reverse, as usual with the gold bullions of the Cangaroo series, shows the portrait of the English Queen Elizabeth II, realized by Dr Stewart Devlin, her Majesty's Goldsmith. The gold coin has a diameter of 80 cm and is a full 12 cm thick. Even if the bullion seems unsuitable –  and rather unwieldy – it is nonetheless an official means of payment. At the time of issue, the nominal value of the bullion was set at 1 million Australian dollars. Today, this would make the Red Cangaroo 2012 a real bargain, as the value of the gold is much higher: at the current gold price (as of 18 October 2016) it would be valued at around 37 million euros, or 53.4 million Australian dollars. As one can imagine, the manufacturing process of the Red Cangaroo 2012 was extremely complex and challenging, as the recommendable documentary on Youtube impressively shows.

The record bullion was on the road through various exhibitions and gold shows in Asia and Europe in 2014 and is now an integral part of the Perth Mint Gold Exhibition in Australia.

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