Back in the “old days” U.S. dollars, halves, quarters and dimes were made of silver. Each one of these silver coins minted before 1965 was made of 90% silver and 10% copper. In 1965 silver was removed from the composition of the dimes and quarters. Half dollars from 1965 to 1970 were minted from 40% silver and 60% copper.
Obtaining old US coins is one of the very best ways to grow your silver collection. If you shop around wisely and compare you can get your silver coins very near the actual spot value. I stree “shop around and compare” because there can be huge differences in prices. If one isnt careful it would be easy to pay too much for what you get.
90% silver US coins ~ when you hold these in your hands you are holding REAL money!
Silver coins have an intrinsic value completely separate from their face value, although the face value can be used as a good index to determine the worth of a coin, or bag of coins.
How to Determine the Value of Silver Coins
The scope of this article is about common, average grade circulated grade coins. Determining the values of high grade or rare coins is much more complicated.
Also, keep in mind that the value of any thing, even a coin, can often be in the eyes of the buyer.
For example a friend asked me how much a certain dime he had was worth and I told him that it was worth around $8 to $10. A few days later he reported to me, very happily, that he had sold the dime for $25 to a guy at the office.
I once found a silver half dollar at a yard sale for $2 when even at the time it was worth around $8.
You can’t count on things to go like that on a regular basis but its nice when deals like that come along!
$1.00 face value of these old silver coins always holds the same amount of silver (Of course this isn’t always 100% accurate because of differences in wear and damage but it is so near that it works). Ten silver dimes are the same as four quarters or two halves. When newly minted $1.00 face value in U.S. 90% silver coins contains 0.71 ounces of pure silver. If silver is at $28 oz. $1 in face value would be about 0.71 x 28 = $19.88. You can use F x 0.71 x S to quickly determine the value of a “bag” of silver coins. F is face value, S is spot value of silver.
“Junk” Silver Coin Bags
Silver coins are frequently sold in bags by face value; $10 Bag, $50 bag, $100 bag, etc. It doesn’t really matter whether it is dimes, quarters, halves or dollars, or even mixed any $50 bag will weigh fairly close to the same amount.
Keep in mind that I am talking about the silver weight as if that were the only consideration. In reality there are other considerations. For example, if you were to try selling silver dollars or half dollars to other collectors you would probably net a higher profit than for dimes.
If you see a chance to get quarters, halves or dollars at nearly the same price as dimes I would recommend that you go for them. Sometimes, for example, you can actually get something like a roll of barber half dollars at a price comparable to, or even lower, than Ben Franklin or Kennedy halves.
Silver Coin Prices Nearly Triple in Just a Year!
Little more than year ago rolls of average circulate Roosevelt and Mercury dimes were selling for around $65 to $70. About 6 months ago those same rolls were selling for $200 and up. This afternoon I did some searching and those dime rolls will cost you close to $130 when you can find a good deal and are often seen being sold for close to the $175 range.
People who obtained 90% silver coins when silver was under $20 they could have tripled their money by May of 2011. In fact they could easily get back more than double right now! Could this have been acomplished with gold? No way. In fact I recommended selling gold to buy silver.
Is it Too Late to Get into Silver?
I really don’t think that it’s too late to get into silver. As I write this, the spot of silver is just under $28.00. My own strong opinion is that silver will surpass $100 within the next year or so. People who were thinking ahead and financially able to buy silver last year should hang on to it. Now is not the time to sell, now is the time to buy!
David Slone, Copyright 2012 CoinCollectorGuide.com