Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by tudrfl5, Sep 25, 2012.
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It doesn't. You see, nobody knows exactly what coins get melted because the people melting them don't keep track of what dates/mint marks get melted. So if a coin is known to be a common date, it will stay known as a common date. At least for your lifetime.
The thing that gives coins their numismatic value is the lack of availability for that given coin, or popularity. Without one or the other, or in some cases both, of those 2 things coins will have little numismatic value.
Take the '09-S VDB cent for example. You can buy a 100 of them on any given day. So rather obviously the coin is readily available. But, it is extremely popular so it has a high price - numismatic value.
Or as another kind of example you can look at the 1904-O Morgan. Prior to the 1960's that coin was thought to be downright scarce because of melting in the early 1900's and they carried a high price. But in the '60s thousands of them were discovered and because they were then readily available prices dropped like a hot rock.
So as long as coins are readily available, and not extremely popular for whatever reason, they will have little numismatic value.
There are also examples of coins where the entire mintage was less than 35 coins. But yet those coins can be purchased for melt value because the coins are not popular.
Popularity plays a much bigger role than most people give it credit for. I once bought a coin from the 16th century where only 2 were known to exist in the entire world. I paid less than $2000 for that coin. And it was a high grade example.
Not really. You see, a general rule in order for coins to bring high prices they can't really be rare because there has to be enough of them to go around before people will care about collecting them.
Now I'm not talking about coins that cost a high 6 figures or more. The really expensive coins are ego coins, coins where the money doesn't matter because the buyer won't miss it. I'm talking about coins that cost 4 figures or 5 figures. Coins that collectors can actually buy. With those kind of coins there has to be enough of them to make a market in them, or prices won't go anywhere. If the coin is so rare that there are only a few known to exist, nobody cares because they know they can never own one.
But if there's thousands of them out there, like there is with the '09-S VDB cent, then everybody wants one. They know they have to pay for it, but it's probably the most popular Lincoln cent there is so they pay it anyway.
Also there is more than one kind of rarity, there is absolute rarity where only a few coins exist. And there is condition rarity, where there are thousands and thousands of the coins available, but limited numbers in higher grades. The '09 Lincoln, there's over a thousand in MS65 Red and above. Plenty more in Red/Brown or Brown. But in Red, the coin can bring $5,000.
There are other coins where there is nowhere near that many available and yet they bring a fraction of that price because people know they can probably never own one.
It never guided mine at all. I collected what I liked whether it was rare or not. But a lot of the coins I collected there were almost always less than 1,000 known to exist in all grades combined. And usually a lot less than that. But not a lot of people collected the coins I did, so the prices were cheap compared to what most really popular coins cost.
http://www.cointalk.com/content/36-morgan-melt-down-pittman-act-1918.html. Many coins were melted in the 80's when silver rose dramatically. There really aren't any reliable numbers on how many silver coins have been melted down, though some people can guess. In terms of value, it has more to do with popularity than anything else.
If I were you, I would learn more about the coins you have. I'd keep the collection in a very safe and secure place and try not to tell any random people or acquaintances about it.
If the number of collectors decrease significantly in the future, the demand for coins will decrease also. As the perfection of counterfeits becomes better than the detection, less will be interested. Perhaps the collection of sealed "slabs" of DNA will become the collectible, with TPG certification that the sample came Einstein's brain ( for example), and will outsell the 1909SVDB The future is fickle.
Of course, being so new to this, I did not know that there were coins that were minted in such few numbers. Are these foreign coins?
To some extent, I guess I am trying to determine what it is that I am actually collecting. To collect for silver melt value just seems a little mundane. It has been fascinating to learn about coins and collecting.
Some are, but some are US coins, though they are not coins minted for circulation. Some US Proofs have very low mintages, some US pattern coins have very low mintages. Same for foreign coins.
But then there are the coins that were minted for circulation, with maybe not high not but reasonable mintages, but today there are few of the coins known to exist. Some are expensive and some are not, for the reasons already discussed.
Then you have coins like the 1804 dollars, and they are not even real coins, only 15 are know to exist, and yet some are worth well over a million dollars each. To me that makes absolutely no sense at all. But such is life.
Where can I find more about these coins?
The best place for you to start is with a copy of the Red Book of US Coins.
If that faint noise I hear is the dollar signs clicking like a slot machine wheel behind your eyeballs - you need to stop them from spinning before they go - clunk
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