Palladium has a unique history. It is one of the only precious metals not initially used in jewelry… but medicine. Discovered in 1803 by British chemist and metallurgist, William Hyde Wollaston, who named Palladium after the asteroid Pallas that had been discovered two years earlier. Wollaston mixed Palladium with other chemical compounds and used it as a treatment for tuberculosis. It did have some negative side effects and was later replaced. But since it’s a sister metal to Platinum, manufactures quickly found use for it beyond medicine.
Palladium is now used in computers, mobile phones, LCD televisions, surgical instruments, aircraft spark plugs, chemicals, dentistry and electrical contacts. Palladium is very similar to Platinum in appearance and industrial uses. The main difference between the two is price – Palladium is less expensive due to lower demand. Palladium does not tarnish or deteriorate with exposure to air, so automotive companies around the globe have used this precious metal in catalytic convertors.
Along with nickel, Palladium is the only other metal that can be alloyed with Gold to produce White Gold, making it very sought after for jewelry and coins. First introduced as jewelry in 1939, it was desired for its brilliant white appearance. Palladium is also malleable, able to be beaten into sheets as thin as 1/250,000 inch. Qualities like being tarnish free for life, lightweight and lustrous have made Palladium a very sought after metal for wedding bands. It is especially popular in China, with a growing middle class that wants it for all its beauty, without the high price of Gold or Platinum.
More than 90 percent of this precious metal comes from Russia and South Africa, with small amounts being found in Australia, Canada, and the United States. A mine in Montana is currently the richest known Palladium deposit in the world. Like Platinum, there are no above ground stockpiles of Palladium and any disruption of production, or any spike in demand, will lead to sharp and immediate price increases.
Palladium coins are growing in demand from investors and collectors. Mint State Gold is proud to offer the most sought after coin in this unique metal - The Canadian Palladium Maple Leaf. Besides being beautiful and in-demand, it’s also among the only palladium coins that can be placed in a U.S. investor’s Individual Retirement Account (IRA). To learn more about investing with these popular coins, speak to one of our representatives today.