Rare Coin Prices

United States and foreign rare coins for sale are usually advertised online at the United States Mint website, auction gallery sites, in the financial sections of local and national newspapers, and through numismatic online and hard copy newsletters. The U.S. Mint's official website features an online catalog containing stamped Presidential collectibles, American Eagles, American Buffalo nickels, and one-of-a-kind currency. In addition to online offerings, investors may purchase a current edition of "The Official Red Book Guide to U.S. Coins," which includes an exhaustive list of rare coin prices, along with photos and detailed descriptions. Some online traders also provide pricing estimates for serious enthusiasts who want to appraise collections before placing them on the market, or for insurance purposes. Pricing, especially for minted precious metals, such as gold, platinum, and silver, fluctuates with the commodities markets from which they are derived. Gold, traditionally traded from between $300 to $450 an ounce, recently reached an all-time high of nearly $1,000 a troy ounce, making gold currency also escalate in value. With platinum and silver metals exceeding $2,000 and $20 an ounce, respectively, currency containing these precious metals should also yield a considerable increase in value.

Since the beginning of civilization, wealthy kings and nobles have indulged in collecting. The most valuable tokens were used as currency, hoarded as part of stolen booty seized in battle, or as a vanity symbol stamped with the likeness of the current monarch. Today's collectors, investors, and traders buy and sell rare coins for sale for their historical, aesthetic or monetary value. Hard-to-find specimens sold at major auction houses net the highest prices when avid collectors and investors are willing to pay top dollar, especially for currency with historical importance or those that were only briefly circulated. The rarity of uncommon, collectible specimens enables them to hold, double, or triple in value over time. While collecting or investing in high-yield uncommon coinage and precious gems can be profitable, the Bible warns against becoming overly captivated by earthly treasures. "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." (Matthew 6:19-21). Like any speculative enterprise, trading in minted currency can be expensive and risky venture.

In addition to precious gold, silver, and platinum coins, other specimens hold considerable intrigue for avid collectors. Error currency, which is double or partially stamped, but finds its way into circulation; historic period coins with significant dates; specially minted registry sets; relics from antiquity; and circulated legal tender from the United States, South Africa, and Great Britain are all considered high yield investments. But rare coin prices can range from conservative to astounding. While uncirculated specimens can be worth more monetarily, circulated legal tender can yield double and triple its original face value. An Early American dollar minted before 1840 can net as much as $200 at auction or private sale. Gold relics from the Roman Empire or scavenged from sunken treasure ships are almost priceless. Investors should also research pricing for American gold Eagles, American buffalo nickels, and South African Krugerrands. The value of the U.S. gold Eagle literally flies in the face of other currency, outclassing gold bullion as a highly collectible trade commodity. Because gold Eagles are legal tender, they are automatically protected by federal law from counterfeiting. Each purchase is documented and its value backed by the U.S. government. These factors alone make the American gold Eagle an outstanding safe and secure investment for collectors and traders.

Rare coin prices are largely determined by the condition of the specimen in question, with high quality samples bringing the greatest return. In the United States, the American Numismatic Association employs the Sheldon system of grading rare coins. Professional numismatists, individuals who study and/or handle rare coins for sale, are helpful to investors or collectors who want to authenticate specimens before buying or selling. On a scale of 1 to 70, the highest quality samples rank near 70, while poorer quality coinage is rated at the lower end of the spectrum. Commercial dealers, investors, and auction galleries also rely on professional grading services to ensure that currency is not only authentic, but properly rated and therefore, accurately priced. Just as precious gems are rated for cut, color and clarity, rare coins for sale are graded according to a lack of defects. Currency in the most perfect or near perfect condition is free from corrosion, pitting, holes, dents, gouges and repairs such as re-engraving and cleaning.

The Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) benefits investors and collectors by grading and slabbing high quality rare coins for sale. The PCGS is the largest authenticating and grading service in America. Graded specimens are certified, registered, and encased in uniquely designed and numbered air-tight plastic holders prior to sale. A PCGS-registered product assures potential traders and buyers of its authenticity and helps to reduce the number of counterfeits on the market. To avoid being scammed, investors should buy from authorized PCGS dealers, search the PCGS database to certify registration information, and thoroughly investigate sellers before agreeing to purchase specimens at rare coin prices. Serious investors should also consider purchasing gold, platinum and silver metal currency, which have consistently held or increased in value in spite of fluctuating economies. Valuable coinage may well be an excellent investment option for individuals seeking a safe harbor for liquid assets in a sea of troublesome economic woes.

Rare Coin Values

Rare coin values vary, just as any others do, and the variance is generally due to the condition of the coin and its age, in addition to the limited number of the particular pieces that were minted. A piece of silver or gold that has had little or no circulation will have a greater value than the one that has been circulated from one pocket to another over decades or centuries. The latter will have poorer color, and the images probably will not be as well defined. Even so, if the piece is truly rare, it will have a substantial price tag.

The rare coin dealer has the enviable position (from a collector's point of view) of getting to buy and sell those pieces that are not seen every day, but are appreciated by great numbers of people. The dealer has to be educated in the subject to do it well, which probably means an internship has been served with a knowledgeable dealer for some time before starting his own business. There are books to study about the art of appraising, but nothing compares to the hands-on experience available by working with a mentor. There is considerable responsibility connected with rare coin dealership, and the person who takes that seriously will do well for both the sellers and buyers of his products.

For the purchaser seeking rare coin values, doing his homework before making a deal is important too. First, the buyer should check out the dealers with whom he wants to do business, and then research the pieces to buy. That way the purchaser will know what to look for in both dealer and value of the item before a transaction is finalized. Just like any other business, because there is sometimes a great deal of money involved, there are those people who get involved who are unscrupulous. Buyers want to get the most for their money with the hope of either passing the pieces on through inheritance, or selling them later for a profit, so they want to get real value. Caution before dealing will ensure that outcome.

There are rare coin value tables published on the Internet that will help a buyer and dealer to follow the history of a particular piece so they will know what to expect in the way of increased value of any given piece of gold or silver. Some will have shown a steady growth over a long period of time. The 1796 quarter is such a piece that collectors particularly enjoy acquiring. Another such coin is the 1879-CC Morgan silver dollar. Any collector fortunate enough to own one of these Carson City rarities will not need to worry about selling for a loss down the road.

Some of pieces that show up in the possession of a rare coin dealer have interesting historical stories associated with them. For instance, the discovery of gold in California in 1848 inspired people to migrate west from all over the country, and a small amount of California gold was minted into 1848 Quarter Eagles indicated by the "CAL" on the reverse side. Another was the Peace silver dollar that was issued in 1921 after WWI. Both of theses are reminders of significant times in the history of our nation.

If a collector is looking at rare coin values to increase so they can be sold at a profit, the key is patience. This is an area where a buyer cannot look for a quick turnaround. Coins do increase in value over time, but it will be years before that profit will be realized. It is recommended by every rare coin dealer that someone serious about building a collection of these gems should buy the very best specimens that can be afforded. It is far better to own a single good piece rather than ten mediocre ones. The coin value tables will provide the information as to which coins have always been in high demand and will continue to be coveted by other collectors in the future. Besides, buying the best that can be afforded, creates a collection the buyer will be proud of.

Another aspect of determining rare coin values is the matter of grading them. This is a skill that can be learned by any collector, so that distinguishing between a Good coin and one that is Very Good. Also, buyers should be familiar with the concept of certified coins. Coin collecting is a serious hobby, and keeping up with the news of the business is a must. Reading market trends, price guides, and Mint releases and paying attention to auctions are regular activities of avid collectors. It stands to reason that those who are doing the work are the ones making the most money with their collections. All of those mentioned here are innocently accumulated and exchanged. The most famous coins in Biblical history were not so innocent. "And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. (Matthew 26:15)

Equally important to all of the above for a serious collector is record keeping. Any rare coin dealer will recommend that a buyer keep track of what, when, where, and how much for every single piece he acquired. Sooner or later that information will be needed, and he will be glad to have it on hand. Being well informed is just as important. If a purchase is being made from an auction, for example, the buyer should learn as much as he can about those being offered so he knows exactly which ones to bid on and how much to expect to pay. Then he needs to find out what time to be there to bid on his chosen items.

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