1 oz Gold Bar

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1 oz Gold Bar
1 oz Argor Heraeus Gold Bar
Photo by Kriplozoik - image lic. under CC 3.0

Measuring around 1.5 inches long (41 millimeters), 1 inch wide (25mm) and 1.71 mm thick, the 1 oz gold bar is one of the most enduringly popular gold bars sizes with investors and collectors. Weighing exactly one Troy ounce (31.1034768 grams), these bars are produced by all the major gold bullion manufacturers of the world.

Like other gold bars, 1 oz gold bars are typically manufactured at 24 karat, also known as 0.9999 purity (99.99%) and this will be stamped on the bar along with the weight, manufacturer's stamp and sometimes (but not always) a serial number. In Europe, the purity is written using the system of millesimal fineness, so the number will appear as 999.9 - meaning 999.9 thousandths pure.

Unlike 1 oz gold bullion coins (such as Krugerrands and U.S. Gold Eagles), which typically have the backing of Government, 1 oz gold bars are not government backed but are certified by their manufacturers. For this reason it is often advised that investors buy gold bars manufactured by major banks - such as the Credit Suisse bar in the image. This is because these have been certified by assay to contain the stated purity and weight of pure gold.

As with other small gold bars (such as 1 gram, 2.5 gram, 5 gram, 10 gram, 20 gram) it is not uncommon to see gold bars come mounted on a dedicated certificate that is the size of an ordinary credit card. The certificate will typically have a serial number which of course matches the number on the bar.

Although the price of gold we see quoted in the commodities market is the "spot price", one will typically pay a little more for the actual purchase of the gold bar - and when selling the bars back to a bullion dealer, will realise a little less. The premiums are calculated as a percentage of the weight of the bar, with larger bars ending up being "cheaper" owing to the percentage being lower. Premiums can vary - it is not uncommon to see a premium of between $50 and $100 on a one ounce bar, with price breaks sometimes being offered for quantity purchase. It is unlikely that you will see gold bullion for sale anywhere at under the spot price.

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