Silver Maple Leaf Buying Guide

The most popular way to buy silver is in the form of bullion bars, but silver coins are also widely available and can be an attractive investment. They’re affordable, they make it easy to buy or sell relatively small amounts of silver at a time and the range of designs gives them an element of collectability as well as their actual metal value. Of course that does come at a cost – you’ll pay a higher premium over the spot price than you would with bars. Even so many investors choose to make silver coins part of their metal holdings, and if that’s your plan the Canadian silver Maple Leaf is high on your list of options.

Sizes and Values

The canadian Maple Leaf is made from 99.99 percent pure silver, all of which is mined in Canada, and is an official Canadian coin. That means it carries a face value and is legal tender. The standard Maple Leaf is a 1oz coin with the Queen’s head on the face and a maple leaf on the reverse. The nominal value, $5 CAD, is also displayed on the face along with the year of manufacture. The real value – and price – of the coin is far higher. The metal value is around $20 USD but unlike most bullion coins that’s only half the story.

The gold Maple Leaf and most other bullion coins, unless they’re special editions, usually only carry a small premium above the spot price of their metal content. The premium on the silver Maple Leaf is much higher, though, with even bullion coins costing up to twice the spot price of their silver content. The main reason for this is the huge range of designs available and the higher collectibility that this creates.


As well as the standard bullion grade coin, which is available in tubes of 25, the Royal Canadian Mint produces a wide range of variants. The simplest of these are premium-grade versions of the Maple Leaf itself, with a higher standard of finish. These sell for about $70 USD, a considerable premium on the metal value. Presentation sets are also available with premium Maple Leaf coins in several sizes, usually 1oz, ½oz, ¼oz, 1⁄10 oz and 1⁄20 oz.

As well as these variants limited editions are also produced in large numbers. These may have a different design substituted for the maple leaf on the reverse or have added colors on the design. Prices are often over $100 USD for a 1oz coin. Smaller and larger coins are often available.

Investment Value

Thanks to the high premiums new Maple Leaf silver coins are a relatively poor choice if you’re looking to build up metal holdings. On the other hand they are often available on the secondhand market at close to spot price, making them a much better deal. We don’t recommend that you invest in special edition coins as the premium is far too high and you’re unlikely to ever recover it – leave these for the coin collectors and stick with secondhand 1oz bullion coins.