World Coins

How does the Cuban embargo result in a U.S. ban on Canadian coins?

1. Illegal Canadian coins?

We've written a lot in recent weeks about President Obama’s plan to loosen up U.S. trade and travel with Cuba and how that might affect numismatics. 

Well Tim Worstall of Forbes took a look at one of the odder ways the Cuban embargo, and particularly its ban on precious metals from the island country, has in the past affected the hobby.

"One of Cuba’s major exports is nickel concentrate,” Worstall writes. "This is derived from mines that were expropriated at the time of the Revolution and as such those concentrates, or any products derived from them, cannot be imported into the U.S."

As it turns out, the materials are exported to a Canadian company called Sherritt that has had a number of contracts with the Royal Canadian Mint. So there is a population of Canadian coins that are technically illegal in the U.S. and, as Worstall reports, can be confiscated by Border Patrol.

Read the full post here, and then check out our past coverage on Cuban relations:

2. Precious metals pricing listed the following prices per ounce at 5:43 p.m. ET Friday:

3. What's new on

The U.S. Mint struck more than 13 billion circulating coins in 2014. We put together an infographic on how the coins broke down by denomination and facility. 

Check it out here.

4. Today's most-viewed post so far

Error allows U.S. Mint customers to order and receive Proof 2015-S U.S. Marshals Service half dollars early

5. Being social

Community Comments