Precious metals are a valuable investment whether you’re interested in collectibles or you’re just interested in gold and silver as bullion-grade commodities. However, there are some important distinctions to be made between these two types of coins.
When it comes to collectible coins, numismatic value, rarity, and condition are more important to the price than silver and gold content. Investor coins are about gold and silver bullion content, plain and simple.
Investors who don’t want to gamble on the future desirability of coins should avoid collectibles. Collectible coins can prove to be profitable if you get lucky buying a coin that becomes valuable in the future, but for most it’s a hobby and a passion.
Gold dealers often sell both investor coins and collectibles. If you’re in the market for a coin that’s already quite rare and valuable, a local collector is where you want to go. Generally, places like online retailers offer collectible coins more recently issued by mints.
When it comes to collectibles, there are three mainstream types of coins.
1. Numismatic Coins
Numismatic coins have a collectible value above and beyond either their face value or, in the case of gold and silver coins, even beyond the value of their bullion content. They might have a historical significance or be particularly hard to come by. One of the differences between a numismatic coin and a bullion coin is that the value of a collectible always come from what another collector is willing to pay for it, whereas bullion prices are determined on the market.
One of the factors affecting a numismatic coin’s value is its condition. A pristine condition means a higher value, so it’s essential that you know how to store and handle gold or silver coins before you buy them.
For the most part, gold and silver bullion coins are not affected by condition, as their value is in their metal content.
2. Commemorative Coins
Commemorative coins are often produced by national mints with unique, beautiful designs. These coins often depict events or people of national historic importance, significant buildings, or iconic animals, such as Canada’s Wildlife Series of silver coins.
The advantage of coins from national mints is that it can be easier to confirm their authenticity (and gold or silver content).
Purely collectible coins may come from private coin-makers or national mints and feature a wide range of designs. These are collectible investments you can keep for years in your collection. Thanks to the silver value, they will always have an appreciating price. Whether they come to take on numismatic value is a matter of chance. If every collectible coin became a rarity, it would be a no-brainer investment – and everyone would buy them.
Collectible coins are great for both die-hard collectors and fans of whatever is commemorated on the coin, from Star Trek to Disney to wildlife and fauna. For a fun way to invest in something that you can keep for years, look into collectible gold and silver coins.