THE bid price for the US$5 African Medallion Dollar (AMD), which was released on May 25, 2017, has jumped by more than 2 000 percent in the past two weeks and has since broken past the US$100 dollar barrier.
Only 100 of the $5 AMD have been put in circulation, and holders have been given certificates that serve as confirmation and guarantee that they possess the genuine articles.
By last week, it is believed that of the US$5 AMD crypto currency in issue, which is currently traded through the closed loop system, there are currently no sellers.
The AMD — usually held for the incremental value they gain over time — are issued by South African-based African Medallion Group (AMG).
Initially, AMG — which has since been registered with the London Metal Exchange — launched 10 one-quarter ounce medallions on April 2, 2017 which sold out before the launch date.
As the world loses faith in fiat money (or paper money), there is a shift towards wealth-baked currencies, including digital currencies as Bitcoin, Ethereum (Russia) and medallions, which are largely considered to be crypto currencies.
Fiat is a Latin word for “it shall be” since it is often based on faith and has no underlying commodity.
Experts say it mainly depends on demand and supply rather than the value of material.
However crypto currencies are regarded as digital assets designed to work as a medium of exchange.
Crucially, their value and number of units are secured through an encryption technique called cryptography.
The uptake and use of Bitcoin in some global markets has become pervasive.
AMG told The Sunday Mail Business recently that there was need to popularise such currencies in order to preserve wealth.
“It is unfortunate that the nature of this emerging market of crypto commodities is somewhat esoteric; however it is our mandate to bring this knowledge to the African people.
“Gold medallions are a new form of crypto currency; we would like to call it crypto commodity, an Afro crypto commodity aimed at the man in the African street, to bring hope, afford the African child an investment opportunity and enhance a wider spectrum, investment, trade and enlightenment.
“Put simply, medallions are coins that are backed by an underlying commodity, which is gold.”
It is envisaged that cryto currencies will ultimately breed a global currency that is capable of transacting in any jurisdiction.
There was need for African countries to keep pace with other countries that are leveraging on digital age.
Added AMG: “Medallions will afford us the capabilities to trade between and beyond borders, be it continentally or globally under the “same currency”, which fortunately has African interests as the root of its cause.
“Obviously, the world is changing and the medallion is running the marathon with other emerging crypto currencies. There is surely a marked shift as we have seen Japan championing the acceptability of crypto currencies and crypto commodities. . .
“The world is now in the digital age as Africa has been lagging.”
AMG was expected to release gold-backed US$1 AMD on June 16, 2017 (Friday).
Recently, as global financial markets become increasingly volatile, investors have been shifting their portfolios and investments towards more stable securities and havens.
And most investors have unsurprisingly been put in gold.
While digital currencies — largely driven my modern technologies — are claiming a share, even though small, of global transactions, gold coins and medallions are slowly reclaiming their lustre.
At the 46th World Money Fair that was held in Berlin, Germany in February this year, the Krugerrand coins, which were first produced in 1967 by Mint SA, a unit of South African Reserve Bank (SARB), were launched.
This year, the Krugerrand, which is considered to be the world’s most collectable gold coin, will mark 50 years after it rolled off the printing press. More than 50 million once-ounce gold Krugerrands have been sold worldwide over the past 50 years.
Also, only 1 967 limited edition 1967 Vintage Proof Krugerrands have been released. Initially sold for 27 rand in 1967, the first minted coins are now worth about 46 000 rand each.
Though principally touted as a store of value, the medallions are expected to become tradable with time.
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