Functionally, the United States today has four distinct legal tender currency standards—Gold, Silver, Platinum and Federal Reserve Note ("paper") dollars (31 U.S.C. §§ 5103 & 5112). Although the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury is "to maintain the equal purchasing power of each kind of United States currency" (31 U.S.C. § 5119(a)), he has largely neglected to do so. Hence in the real world economy, distinguishing between each type of dollar becomes paramount.
For example, a Gold Dollar consists of Gold Eagle or Buffalo coin minted by the U.S. Treasury. The face value of a one-ounce U.S. gold coin is fifty ($50) dollars. So a Gold Dollar would be 1/50th of a one troy ounce legal tender gold coin. The exchange rate between paper and gold dollars varies, but has recently averaged around $25 paper dollars for $1 gold dollar. A Gold Cent is a hundredth of that amount— about a quarter dollar in base metal coinage.
UPMA™ carefully distinguishes between Gold, Silver, Platinum and Paper dollars. Silver Dollars minted before 1965 having 371.25 grains of fine silver convert to today’s 480-grain Silver Dollar at a ratio of $1.50 to $1.00 face value. Although according to the federal courts, legally “a dollar is a dollar regardless of the physical embodiment of the currency” Crummey v. Klien, 295 Fed.Appx. 625 (5th Cir. 2008), following Thompson v. Butler, 95 U.S. 694 (Supreme Ct. 1877), in the real world, the kind of currency exchanged carries enormous implications.
UPMA™ offers Liquid Gold™ accounts denominated in gold and silver dollars, in order provide members greater flexibility in transacting with their various dollar options.