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4 Factors that Determine the Price of Numismatic Coins

4 Factors that Determine the Price of Numismatic Coins

US Numismatic Coins

Experienced coin buyers and investors understand the vital distinction between the price and value of numismatic coins. Many factors impact how much a dealer may buy or sell coins for, so you should proceed cautiously with new investments. Before you make your next purchase or attempt to sell coins online, review four fundamental factors considerations that impact the sale.

Production Volume


An aged coin in excellent condition won’t necessarily boast a high sale price. Rather, the production volume or mintage of the coin is a more significant factor in determining the value of the coin. The U.S. Mint, and in particular, the various mint locations scattered through the U.S., have produced varying numbers of coins over the years. Of note, the Carson City, Charlotte, and Dahlonega Mints tended to produce fewer coins than some of the other mints, such as those from Philadelphia, Denver, San Francisco, and New Orleans. Additionally, coins have been composed of various metals through the years, which is a contributing factor to their value. Significant historical events, such as the Civil War and World War II, have also played a role in the mintage and type of metals used for the production of coins.


If you want to sell rare coins at a high premium, coin buyers will likely expect the coin to have little to no wear. Since most coins, with the exception of proof or specimen coins, were produced for general circulation, they will exhibit evidence of contact marks. This is due to the coins being transported in canvas bags from the U.S. Mint to individual bank locations. Contact marks don’t necessarily indicate that the coin has been circulated. Rather, the extent of the contact marks will determine the grade of the coin. Minor details can make a huge difference in value, which is why you should ensure that you’re working with a reputable coin grading service or dealer.


The survival rate is an estimate of the number of coins believed to exist for any particular issue and is typically understood to be an estimation. A coin’s survival rate can be impacted by its age, mintage quality, the volume of deliberately destroyed coins, and other factors. Throughout history, some coins have been removed from circulation and returned to the United States Treasury to be melted down. In particular, the Pittman Act of 1918 was responsible for the destruction of nearly 270 Morgan silver dollars. Additionally, many silver coins were melted in 1979 and 1980 when silver soared to an all-time high of $50 per ounce.

Supply and Demand

Though the factors survivorship of rare coins is important, rarity doesn’t solely indicate value. Dealer prices are often impacted by available supply and demand and where the economy happens to be in the business cycle at that particular time. For example, if a coin dealer has a large inventory of a particularly rare or numismatic coin, it can often be purchased at a lower price point relative to times where scarcity exists. Furthermore, in a strong economy or economic expansion, individuals tend to have more discretionary income, which can cause the prices of numismatic coins to be bid up. On the other hand, economic contractions or recessions can result in lower prices for rare coins, as collectors are more likely to tighten their belts in this environment.

Atlanta Gold & Coin Buyers is one of the most trusted coin dealers in Metro Atlanta, with an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, and are members of the most recognized and respected industry-related organizations. Our clients can review all of our coin prices and buying rates online, and we offer mail-in appraisals via USPS. Complete our contact form today to learn more about buying and selling rare coins and bullion with an expert numismatist.

Tony Davis
Tony Davis
Tony Davis is the owner of Atlanta Gold & Coin Buyers, a full service Atlanta based coin and bullion dealer specializing in buying, selling and appraising coins and coin collections of all types and sizes. Tony frequently writes on various economic and numismatic related topics affecting the coin and bullion markets and has been published on some of the industry’s leading websites, including Coin Week, the American Numismatic Association, Coin Collector, Coinflation, and Coin Auctions Help, just to name a few. Visit Atlanta Gold & Coin’s website at to obtain additional information on the products, services and educational resources offered by his company. Tony can be reached at or at 404-236-9744
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