The world’s most expensive coin, the Flowing Hair Dollar, went up for auction yesterday. In 2010 it sold for just under $8 million, three years later it set a world record when it sold for over $10 million. It was bought by a collector to add to a unique collection of Early Silver Dollars – including the 1804 Draped Bust Dollar which made headlines when it sold for over $3 million in 2017.
What makes a coin collectable?
It’s incredible to think that a 1 dollar coin could be worth millions today, but there’s several things that determine the numismatic value and collectability of a coin. So we’ve put together a collector’s guide to help you know what to look out for when adding coins to your collection.
Several things determine the numismatic value and collectability of a coin – usually it’s based on the type of coin, the year it was minted, the place it was minted and even its condition or finish. But the biggest factor is probably the mintage of a coin and its rarity.
Mintage and Rarity
It’s the old rule of supply and demand – the less that are made, the more difficult a coin is to source and the more collectable it becomes. There are thought to be less than 150 of the Flowing hair dollars in existence today which contributes to the value of them.
Or take for example the US 2015 Silver Eagle. This had a mintage of just 79,640, making it three times rarer than the second rarest silver Eagle (this year’s COVID Eagle). As these were snapped up by collectors, they have become more and more scarce, and in higher demand than ever, with collectors willing to pay a premium just to add one to their collections.
Year of issue
This doesn’t always mean age of the coin, but the year can play an important factor in determining the value of a coin. Generally you can expect to pay a premium for historic issues but this isn’t always the case. In fact some Roman coins can be picked up for less than £50, but coins from much more recent times, such as Victorian Crowns can sell for hundreds of pounds! Victorian crowns struck in important years, such as the 1887 Jubilee Head crowns are more desirable because of their links to significant events.
The finish of a coin, or the strike, is also an important factor to consider. Proof finished coins are struck several times with specially prepared blanks, which gives the design a particularly sharp edge and shows every detail. Proof finishes are highly desired among collectors, as are coins issued in BU – or brilliant uncirculated finish. This means the coin hasn’t been in circulation so is free from all the scratches you’d find on coins in your change.
Sometimes the mintmark or location of the mint in which a coin was struck can affect the collectability of the coin. The mintmark on a coin tells us where a coin was struck, and from that collectors use historical records to work out just how rare each coin is. For example, the Morgan Dollar was struck in 5 different mints, but the Carson City issues are the most sought after – they were struck for only 13 of the 43 years in which the Morgan Dollar was minted.
Many collectors specialise in some of these areas and build their collections around rare coins, themes and years of issue, or even mintmarks. But demand can and often will change over time and sometimes that means the value someone is willing to pay for a coin will increase over time – just as we’ve seen with the Flowing Hair Dollar.
If you’re interested…
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From Tiny Dancer, to Rocket Man, there’s no denying Sir Elton John has produced some of the most recognisable and popular hits the world has ever seen. His music catapulted him to global stardom in the 60s and 70s, and he is now one of the world’s best-selling artists of all time.
And now, the Royal Proclamation issued on the 14th of February 2020 confirms that a range of Elton John coins will be released this year. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate his legacy and contribution to British music than with a UK coin!
Not many details have been released yet by The Royal Mint, but if you want to be the first to know when they’re released simply register your interest below.
In the meantime, let’s take a closer look at the Royal Proclamation to see what’s in store for this exciting new coin range…
Next Music Legend?
This news comes following the exciting release of the first coin in The Royal Mint’s Music Legends coin series – the Queen £5 – earlier this year.
I think we can safely assume that Elton John will be part of this series and we’re sure that collectors and Elton fans alike will be feeling the love for this new coin.
At the moment, the designs are still top secret but the reverse is said to feature Elton John’s boater hat, glasses and bow tie set against a union flag and the inscription “ELTON JOHN”.
It also looks like this commemorative Elton John coin will be issued in a variety of base and limited edition precious metal specifications and denominations. This includes a Brilliant Uncirculated £5 coin and a 1oz Silver £2 coin that will be the only coin in the range to feature a special edge inscription – “a decorative star pattern and in incuse letters the inscription “ELTON JOHN”.”
Register your interest
It goes without saying that Elton John has leagues of fans worldwide, so I expect these new commemorative issues to be amongst the most anticipated new issues in 2020, and as such will be in high demand. That means when the coins are released you’ll have to act quickly to secure yours!
If you want to be kept up to date and be the first to know when these coins are available then simply register your interest below and we’ll email you as soon as we have more information.
I don’t know about you, but I’m counting down the days until James Bond – or better known by his MI6 codename 007 – will be returning later this year in the hotly-anticipated 25th Bond film, No Time To Die.
But what’s perhaps even more exciting is that the Royal Proclamation issued on 14th February 2020 confirmed a BRAND NEW coin series featuring the British secret agent will be issued – just in time for the release of the new movie!
Much like many of Bond’s missions, the details of these coins are a closely guarded secret. But your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to register your interest below, so that when the new coins are released you’ll be the first to know.
In the meantime, let’s take a closer look at the Royal Proclamation to see what is in store for this exciting new series…
007 to feature on THREE coins
According to the Proclamation there will be not one, not two, but three coins issued in the series. The designs have been confirmed to feature the following:
- The Bond car from Goldfinger set against the 007 logo with the inscription ‘Bond, James Bond‘.
- The Bond car from The Spy Who Loved Me set against part of the 007 logo and the inscription ‘Pay attention 007′.
- A depiction of James Bond’s torso in a dinner jacket and bow tie set against a part of the 007 logo with the inscription ‘Shaken not stirred’.
From this I think we can safely say that all three designs will feature iconic James Bond images that we’ve grown to know and love, and will instantly recognise from the films.
It also looks like this commemorative Bond coin will be issued in a variety of base and limited edition precious metal specifications and denominations. This includes a Brilliant Uncirculated £5 coin and a Silver £2 coin.
Not the first time Bond features on a UK coin…
However, eagle eyed collectors will know that this isn’t the first time the suave secret agent has featured on a UK coin. He made his debut appearance in the Royal Mint’s A-Z 10p coin series, taking the ‘B’ for ‘Bond’ spot.
Out of all the A-Z 10p designs, ‘Bond’ is widely considered to be the most popular. This makes me certain that this brand new James Bond series WILL to be a real hit with collectors!
If you’re interested…
It goes without saying that Bond has an unrivalled cult following with leagues of fans worldwide. So, I expect these new commemorative issues to be in high demand… Click here to see the full range!