Regardless of the collectible coin in question, there are many qualities which come together to form its overall value. There is never a guarantee that a specific piece will increase in value over time, and it is always up to you to form your own opinion when buying. Here we will discuss the factors that make some collectible coins more appealing than others, and some of the various qualities which you may see when choosing a new collectible coin.
One of the factors that many consider when choosing a coin is the engraver or designer. Some of these artists have incredible reputations for the quality of their work, thus making a particular coin more appealing.
Of all the designers and engravers creating art for coins today, two of the most prominent are John Mercanti and Jody Clark. Mercanti served as the 12th Chief Engraver of the U.S. Mint and retired in 2010, although his designs were well-known before he was appointed to that position. Clark is an artist who works for the British Royal Mint. He is known for designing the fifth definitive portrait of Queen Elizabeth II used for coinage.
While Mercanti has retired from the U.S. Mint, his work can still be found on American Silver Eagles, American Platinum Eagles, and since 2014, the Australian Wedge-Tailed Eagle series. Clark’s effigy of Queen Elizabeth II is present on new coins from the British Royal Mint and he also created the reverse designs for the Queen’s Beasts series.
The artwork on the obverse or reverse of a particular coin is nearly always a deciding factor for a collectible piece. Some designs are more desirable because they are classics, while others get attention for their impressive visual appeal.
The 2016 Centennial Gold Coins released by the U.S. Mint are a perfect example to show how appealing classic designs can be. Three classic coins and their designs reached their 100th anniversary in 2016, the Walking Liberty Half Dollar, the Standing Liberty Quarter, and the Mercury Dime. These were all big sellers from the start because they are .9999 fine gold versions of classic American coins.
The Treasures of Paris series issued by France isn’t as well-known as the 2016 Centennial gold coins, but they provide an ideal example of coins that are desirable because of their eye appeal. The silver pieces of this series have a gilt proof finish and all of these coins have highly detailed designs showcasing renowned establishments in Paris.
In some cases, the theme of a coin’s design can be what makes it appealing. Typically, coins that fall into this category have a theme that is popular around the world.
There are plenty of pieces that could be used as an example, but among the best are the Disney coins issued by Niue. Niue actually has multiple Disney coins in production at this point, including the Disney Princesses and Mickey Through the Ages series.
Other excellent examples include Niue’s Star Wars coins and Australia’s Lunar series. Niue is issuing both a Star Wars Classic series and a Star Wars: The Force Awakens series. Many world Mints issue coins with a Lunar theme, but those struck by the Perth Mint in Australia are typically among the most popular. Coins with a well-known theme often have mintage limits, which we will discuss shortly.
Some collectible coins are simply unlike anything that has been offered previously. That was the case when the U.S. Mint issued the dome-shaped National Baseball Hall of Fame commemoratives in 2014. Like the Centennial gold coins of 2016, these were an instant hit as well. Prior to these commemoratives, the U.S. Mint had never offered a dome-shaped coin before. The National Baseball Hall of Fame coins sold very well at the Mint, and many are still looking for them now.
The Captain America Shield coin from Fiji is unique as well. In addition to having the same design as Captain America’s shield, it also has the same colors and a domed shape. These features came together to make the coin look like a miniature version of Cap’s shield!
Modern coins may have more features than classic coins in some cases, but mintage is always a factor for either. In fact, some consider mintage to be the most important factor when choosing a collectible coin. However, you should be aware that modern coins don’t necessarily have higher mintage figures than classic coins or vice versa.
Some modern collectible coins have very low mintage figures which are often set before minting begins. Many of the coins offered around the world today have mintage limits, some of them are even less than 1,000 pieces.
The .5 g gold coins of Tokelau’s Creatures of Myth and Legend series had a mintage limit of 1,500 pieces. In 2016, Palau issued High Relief Antiqued Silver Skull coins. These were limited to a mintage of 1,750 coins.
The Captain America: Civil War coins issued by Fiji in 2016 also had low mintage limits. These were actually struck by Sunshine Minting here in the U.S. Each design was limited to 3,000 pieces.
The Mickey Through the Ages series offers low mintage figures as well. For example, the ¼ oz. gold version of each design was given a limited mintage of 1,000 pieces.
However, not all modern coins with low mintage figures have set limits. The Proof American Platinum Eagles are known for this. Fewer than 10,000 were struck in 2016, while 2015 gave us a mintage of just 3,886 pieces.
Knowledge of these factors can help you see why some collectible coins may be more appealing than others. This information can also help you understand why a coin that someone else is so intrigued by may not be so appealing to you.
Again, there is never a guarantee that a particular coin will increase or decrease in value. However, understanding the factors discussed here can help you to be a little more strategic with your future purchases. If you haven’t done so already, you may want to consider choosing which of the above qualities are most important to you. Once you do that, keep your eyes open for new releases that fit your personal criteria.
Remember, the best reason to buy a collectible coin is because you would enjoy owning it. This is the simplest way to build a collection that you are happy with. Buy the coins that are right for you and your collection!
When you’re ready to add another collectible coin or two to your collection, you can be sure that MCM will have a variety of options to choose from. If you know about a coin you want before it’s released, be sure to take advantage of the notifications available in the Coming Soon section.
||Brian Comp Jr. is a coin and bullion expert from Pennsylvania. He attended his first coin show at the age of 8 with his father in the late 90s. Brian has been working as a writer since 2011 and specializes in content that helps customers make good decisions. In his free time, Brian enjoys reading, checking out new coins, lifting weights, and drinking coffee. He’s always ready to answer questions, just email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.|