What You Need to Know Before Selling American Silver Eagle Proof Coins

Selling Silver Eagle Proof Coins
Silver Eagle Proof Coin

The American silver eagle proof coin, along with the uncirculated American silver eagle, is the official silver bullion coin of the United States.  The coin contains exactly one troy ounce of pure silver and is considered legal tender with a face value of $1.  First minted in 1986, following the passage of the Liberty Coin Act on July 9, 1985, American silver eagle proof coins are among the most beautiful U.S. silver coins ever minted.  They are produced from a specially prepared dye, which creates a mirror-like finish background and a frosted foreground.  American silver eagle proof coins are considerably rarer than their uncirculated counterparts.  In addition, a few varieties and lower mintage production runs exist, which are considerably more valuable than common date silver eagle proofs.  In this article, we’ll share with you the information that you need to know to realize the full value when selling American silver eagle proof coins.

Mintage of Silver Eagle Proofs

The mintage of silver eagle proof coins is considerably less than silver eagle bullion coins.  From 1986 – 2012, silver eagle proof coins were over 17 times more rare than silver eagle uncirculated coins.  For a matter of perspective, 18,561,731 proof coins were minted from 1986 – 2012, while 317,951,243 uncirculated silver eagles were produced over the same time period.  With the exception of variety or special issue coins, the two key date American silver eagle proof coins were produced in 1993 and 1994, with mintages in the 400,000 range.  These coins sell at a slight premium over most other standard issued silver eagle proof coins.

Variety or Special Issue Proof Silver Eagles

Special edition and variety proof silver eagles can also sell for considerably more than the silver value of the coins.  One of the most popular sets is the 2006 20th anniversary silver eagle set, which includes an uncirculated silver eagle, a silver eagle proof, and a reverse silver eagle proof.  Reverse silver eagle proof coins differ from standard silver eagle proofs, in that they have a frosted background and a mirror-like finish foreground.  Because of their popularity, the U.S. Mint has also produced reverse silver eagle proof coins in 2011, 2012 and 2013, which were sold as part of special issue sets.  The mintage of reverse silver eagles in the three years in which they were produced prior to 2013 is 248,875, 99,981 and 230,000.  As you would expect, these coins sell at higher premiums than standard silver eagle proof coins because of their rarity.

1995-W American Silver Eagle Proof Eagle

While technically a special issue silver eagle proof coin, we decided to highlight the 1995-W American silver eagle proof coin separately because of its low mintage and high value. This coin was produced by the West Point mint in 1995 as part of a special edition set, and had a production run of only 30,125 coins.  Because of its rarity, the 1995-W silver eagle proof coin sells for well over $1,000 in raw or ungraded condition, and can sell for upwards of five figures if certified by NGC or PCGS in MS70 condition.  While this coin isn’t indicative of the value of the other silver eagle proof coins, it’s an example of a modern minted proof coin that is quite valuable.

How to Sell Silver Eagle Proof Coins

Unlike uncirculated silver eagle bullion coins, which sell for close to the prevailing silver value in the futures market, silver eagle proof coins should be sold on an individual basis after taking a few factors into consideration.  First and foremost, to realize the full value of your silver eagle proof coins, they must be accompanied with the original government packaging, which includes a felt display case, a COA, and a box.  Additionally, each of these items should be without blemish to maximize your sale.  If included in your collection, set aside 1993 and 1994 proof coins, as they sell at a premium over the other standard issued American silver eagle proof coins.  Also be sure to check your collection for a 1995-W silver eagle proof, set aside reverse silver proof coins from 2006, 2011, 2012, and 2013 and certified silver eagle proof coins in MS70 condition, as they should be sold for an additional premium.

Conclusion

In summary, before selling American silver eagle proof coins, it’s important to become familiar with the mintage of the coins.  While most silver eagle proofs are common date coins and will sell at a standard rate, silver eagle proof coins from 1993 and 1994 should be separated from the rest of your collection.  Also take note of any special minted sets, as they typically contain rare or low mintage coins, such as the 1995-W silver eagle proof.  Lastly, be on the lookout for reverse proof silver eagles and certified proof silver eagles in MS70 condition, as these coins will also sell at a premium.  Being armed with this information should allow you to receive the full value when the time comes to sell your silver eagle proof coins.

Tony Davis
Tony Davis