What coins are worth.

I just bought three of the ‘Silver Liberty’ coins. They were $39.00 a piece, the ‘last silver dollar minted in 1999’. Liberty is etched in color, and truly it is very striking. But, what I wondered about was paying $39 for a coin that is really just a dollar. These came from the U.S. Mint, and I thought pretty special.

They now have come out with the ‘2000 Liberty’ looking just like the 1999 one except of course for the date. How do the prices get set for these things?? Printing costs? Or just guesses of what goofies like me would pay???

“Consider it a challenge…”

IIRC, the colored coins (usually the red white and blue ones, and some gold colored ones) are ‘after market’. they don’t come from the mint, so you pay more for them.

at least that’s always what i figured.

and you have to watch some of thesse ‘coins’. many times they aren’t legal tender. anyone can strike a coin.

but i could be wrong

I’d say you overpaid about $35.

To the IRS, that coin has two different values.

If you receive it as compensation or payment, it is worth $4 or $5, whatever the price of silver is.

However, if you want to pay taxes with it, the IRS says that it’s worth only $1.

It’s great to be able to make up the rules.

If you want to pay taxes with it, sell it for the $4 or $5 of silver, and pay the taxes with that. It’s just like if you had a rare, mis-struck coin that was worth thousands of dollars - don’t pay the IRS with it directly, sell it and use the proceeds.


Try ebay.com & find out what they are going for.

Millenium Silver Liberty’s there, 20 of them, $120 opening bid & no buyers. Not the fancy one you said. But trust me, check there first.

Guesses. Those coins are meant for collectors. It’s like selling a beanie baby (except coin collectors are more numerous than beanie baby collectors, so you have a better chance of making money with a coin.)

I think that if you want to make money with a USA coin collection, your best bet is to buy old (pre-20th century) coins in mint condition.

You might check on rec.collecting.coins first. I know many collectors who say that eBay sellers are vastly overcharging for relatively common coins (and the buyers are paying for them because they don’t know what the coin is really worth). It never hurts to get more opinions.

“Drink your coffee! Remember, there are people sleeping in China.”


The U.S. Mint does not paint their coins. If anything, this ridiculous feature reduces the value of the coin to a serious collector.

The rip-em-off for whatever the traffic will bear bullion stampers are having a field day with the “FIRST NEW SILVER DOLLAR OF THE MILLENNIUM” and related scams. Hint: the U.S. mint does not produce coins with the words “.99 proof silver” stamped on them, either. (I LOVE the “new quarter” collection kits with the giant cardboard map of the United States for only $29.95. The kids will go absolutely bonkers with interest and enthusiasm when they realize they will be 19 years old before their collection is complete and worth exactly $12.50).

These coins are not sold by the U.S. Mint, it is something called “The U.S. Historic Society” or some similar drivel. They are, I believe, the same group that years ago sold the pewter Civil war chess set. They are always advertising something on TV…and its never very collectible or worth what they are charging. If you paid $29 for these coins - then I hope you enjoy them because you paid about $28 more than they are actually worth.

Cooper wrote:

Actually, it’s not QUITE that bad.

The silver “dollar” being painted and resold in these ads is the silver American Eagle bullion coin. The image on the front of the coin is a slightly-larger rendition of the same “Walking Liberty” design used on U.S. half dollar coins from 1916-1947. The back bears a picture of a “heraldic” eagle (an eagle with a shield over its white-meat) and the words “1 OZ. FINE SILVER - ONE DOLLAR”.

The “ONE DOLLAR” designation is essentially meaningless. It’s there so that the coin will officially fall under the anti-counterfeiting laws of the United States. The coin’s actual value is the current market price for a troy-ounce of silver, plus a little bit for the numismatic value of the coin (i.e. it’s not minted in unlimited quantities, it has a pretty picture on it, etc.). As of the time of this writing, the spot price of silver is $5.41 per troy ounce, and you can buy year 2000 silver Eagle bullion coins from www.wscoin.com or a similar coin dealer for $10.01 each (not including shipping). Note that $10.01 is the retail price of a common-grade uncirculated Silver Eagle, not a super-shiny “proof” quality Silver Eagle, which is over twice as expensive.

So, if you paid $29 for a Year-2000 Silver Eagle with a colorful picture on the front, you’re paying $10 for the coin and $19 for the paint job. They’d better be using damn good paint for that kind of price.

The truth, as always, is more complicated than that.

Incidentally, private mints also stamp out 1-troy-ounce silver coins. They’re called “silver rounds” in the bullion biz, and right now are retailing from the above establishment for $6.11 each.

Of course, these coins are neither as pretty nor as difficult to counterfeit as the U.S. Mint’s creations. But they’re a great form of alternative currency to have lying around if you still believe the Y2K bug is gonna cause civilization to collapse. :rolleyes:

Coins, like any collectable, are only worth as much as someone is willing to pay you for them. If someone is willing to pay $1000 for a “Welcome Back Kotter” lunch box, who’s to say that your painted Liberty dollar won’t be worth something, someday.

I wouldn’t hold my breath, though.

Elmer J. Fudd,
I own a mansion and a yacht.

Lots of things like this come from the Franklin Mint which, despite its name, has nothing to do with the US Mint.

“Drink your coffee! Remember, there are people sleeping in China.”


'(I LOVE the “new quarter” collection kits with the giant cardboard map of the United States for only $29.95. The kids will go absolutely bonkers… especially when they find out there isn’t a quarter for every state. Isn’t that right? Two did not have quarters…

Handy, could you elaborate on that? Which two did not have quarters? As far as I know, there are only five so far, with the sixth, Massachusetts coming out this month or next.
BTW, has anyone seen the ads for the one POUND silver coin?

Thanks for all the speedy responses, and I figured that I had ‘probably’ paid too much, but I didn’t know that they weren’t from the U.S.Mint, my charge card bill had the mint down as the one who was paid, but, maybe that doesn’t mean much either.

Mjollnir, thanks for the laugh about IRS getting to make up their own rules, yeah, it must be nice.

Arnold Winkelried, I’m not a coin collector (thank goodness) or a beanie baby collector either, so I don’t care how much they appreciate in value, so much as curiousity about why the price is set as it was.

Nickrz, of course you WOULD mention the quarter maps, yeah, I got THOSE too, and the biggest hassle of my life. I called to order them directly from the Mint (I thought) and the operator stole my card number and the maps went to someone else. They wouldn’t give me the maps till I proved I wasn’t ‘Fred’ Wright, which meant sending copies of my license. It took three months to get them, and these don’t come with the coins, and were only $24 each, so maybe it isn’t the same map that is being referred to, hopeuh, hopeuh, hopeuh!

And Tracer, it actually is a good paint job, but my car probably needed it worse, and maybe that is what I should have gotten instead!

“Consider it a challenge…”