Peter Anthony: The 1986 gold 50 Yuan ½ oz. Panda Proof is part of the first five piece proof set in the Panda series. It was released during a boom time for Panda coin demand and was a solid seller at that time. Each of the 10,000 sets minted contained the five 1/20 through 1 oz. gold Pandas. The proof versions can easily be distinguished from the B.U. coins. A small P is located near the right foot of the bear. This solid Panda that stands head-on amidst bamboo shoots is another masterpiece of line drawing.
Although the proof sets were initially popular over the years a strong secondary market never developed and the price dropped to near the level of the B.U. coins. Some sets were even melted for their gold content. A moderate number of coins have been certified with most of those earning a PF-69 grade.
The 1986 1/2 oz. gold Panda is part of the "Gold 1/2 Ounce Panda, 1983-Date, Mint State and Proof." NGC Registry set.