Collectibles Corner 
a resource for hobbyists, collectors, and collectibles dealers 

A resource for coin collectors and stamp dealers.


Determining the Value of Collectible Coins

Collectible coin values are determined by a number of factors. For example, gold coin values will be different from the values of coins made from other material. Also, rare coin values will be different from those of collector coins that are owned by many people. Understanding these factors can help you figure out if you are getting a good deal when you first start collecting coins.

 What determines coin value?
Four basic factors go into how much a coin will be worth. These factors are the scarcity of the coin, the demand for the coin, the condition of the coin and the exchange rate of the coin. The scarcity of a coin is how many coins are in circulation in the collecting market at any given time. A standard-issue US Mint coin from 100 years ago will be more valuable than one from a decade ago. The rarer the coin, the higher the price.

Demand is another factor in determining how valuable a coin is. If nobody is interested in collecting the coin, the price will be lower. On the other hand, if a coin has a really special design that is attractive to collectors, the price may be double or even triple what it was worth before it was sought out by other collectors.

The condition of the coin is a big contributor to value. Obviously, the closer a coin is to being "mint," the better the price. In the cases of some extremely rare or old coins, the condition is less of a factor in price since these coins are normally worn from age.

Finally, the current exchange rate for a coin will contribute to the price determination. Coins that are made out of gold and other precious metals are obviously more valuable than blended metals. For example, gold coins recently got a lot more valuable due to the increase in gold prices.

What kinds of coins are the most valuable?
Many different valuable coins are currently in circulation. These coins blend into regular pocket change because the differences between them and other coins are very slight. For example, a 1969 Lincoln cent with a doubled die obverse has just a slight difference from a regular coin and is worth $35,000.

More recently, the presidential dollars have had valuable errors in them. The edging on the coins is supposed to have lettering on them that reads "In God We Trust" and "E Pluribus Unum." In some cases the edging is missing and in others it is repeated several times. These coins can be valued at $50 to $3,000 depending on which President is on the coin.

The next time you're looking at your coin collection or just want to know what's inside your pocket, you'll understand the determining factors in what makes a coin valuable, and you'll have the knowledge you need to build an impressive coin collection.

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