Archive for March, 2012

Trading Your Way to a Great Collection

Friday, March 9th, 2012

Building a collection of rare coins does not have to be a one way street. Rather than constantly spending money to acquire the next coin necessary for your accumulation, you can also trade or sell portions of your collection. This helps finance a portion or all of new purchases and can help your collection grow.

I am currently working on assembling a collection of Peace Dollars. This series is relatively approachable since it was minted from just 1921 to 1935, variously at three different mint facilities. While there are some key dates, none are in the category of major rarities that would make them unattainable.

Slowly but steadily coins have been acquired for each issue of the series. Along the way, duplicate coins were inevitable. Some of these were from upgrades, meaning a better condition or eye appeal coin was purchased in lieu of the current example. Others were mistake coins that were purchased, but later decided not correct for the current collection.

These upgrades and mistakes become a source of funds for acquiring new purchase. You can easily trade the coins to a dealer, who can provide credit towards new purchases. With the internet, you can also try to sell the coins yourself and get a slightly better price. The funds raised from this sale can then be used towards new purchases.

Using this method can be a great way to help your collection grow, even when you do not have the money to spend.

Silver Bullion Coins Make a Great Investment

Thursday, March 8th, 2012

Silver bullion coins offer an investment opportunity. In the United States, the Mint offers the American Eagle coin. The American Eagle Bullion contains a minimum of one troy ounce of 99.9% pure silver. The cost of an American Eagle runs at the rate of an ounce of silver plus a bit for minting and carrying costs. The Mint has produced the Eagle since 1986. Bullion coins are the only coins offered by the US Mint with a guarantee of material content and purity attached. In comparison, coins made for circulation have a monetary value not based on the material of the coin.

The design for the US silver bullion coins comes from the original design of the Walking Liberty Half Dollar designed by Adolph A. Weinman. This design shows a stylized Lady Liberty walking towards the rising sun carrying an olive branch. The original design came out in 1917 with the first Walking Liberty issue. In the silver coin of modern times, the reverse shows a bald eagle behind a shield with outstretched wings. The right foot holds an olive branch while the left holds arrows. There are thirteen stars above the eagle’s head for each of the thirteen original colonies. The reverse design was the work of John Mercanti, the current and 12th Chief Engraver of the US Mint.

The American Eagle silver bullion coins are legal tender in the United States. They have a face value of $1. However, the value of their silver content is much greater. It is extremely rare that someone uses it for its $1 value. The Mint offers bullion, proof, and uncirculated sets. The bullion sets have no mintmarks on them. Until 1998, they came from the San Francisco Mint. Production moved to Philadelphia and West Point for 2000-2001. After 2001, they come exclusively from West Point.

Other countries also produce silver bullion coins. The UK offers the Britannia at different weights ranging from 1/10th to one full troy ounce. Australia offers two silver coins with weights ranging from one to 10 troy ounces. Canada offers the Maple Leaf in a one troy ounce version. China offers silver coins called the Silver Panda in various weights. Russia brings the George the Victorious forward in 1.01 troy ounces. Mexico also has a silver bullion coin called the Libertad with weights going from 1/20th to five troy ounces. If you want to invest in silver, these coins make great choices.