Silver coins are the most dynamic form of silver in that they serve as both a type of bullion investment and as a collectible. Though some coins are more expensive than others, virtually all of them are going to be sold at a fair amount over the spot price of silver per ounce.
The reason that coins cost more than a round or bar of comparable weight is found in their scarcity and, in return, their demand. Coins have a much higher secondary market demand than any other piece of silver because they can’t simply be replicated at will. A bar, round, or other piece of raw silver can be minted by any company. A coin, on the other hand, is usually produced in limited quantities and is only made by one particular mint. In the end, coins are very popular among collectors, and when you combine that with the value of silver you will end up with an expensive item.
Types of Silver Coins
There are literally hundreds, possibly even thousands of different types of silver coins that have been minted throughout the world over the centuries. For all intents and purposes, there are just a handful that are actively traded on a large scale. These coins come from many of the most recognizable world powers, including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Britain, Australia, and China. Though there are silver coins that are released by governments all over the world, these countries are most well known in the vertical.
In the United States, the American Silver Eagle is the most acclaimed silver coin. In China the Silver Panda is the national coin, in Canada it is the Silver Maple Leaf, Britain has Britannias, Australia has Kangaroos, Kookaburras, and more, with Mexico minting the Libertad. All of these coins are also produced in gold form.
Silver coins are most often found in brilliant uncirculated condition. This condition means that they are clean, still shiny, and have not been used as actual currency. A coin loses this status in terms of condition once it becomes beat up and loses its luster. The highest quality of silver coins are known as proofs. Proof coins are exceptionally shiny because they are struck more than once. Aside from their glimmer, proof coins also feature extremely detailed illustrations. Proof coins are the most intricate silver coins and they are usually the most expensive as well.
Cost of Silver Coins
For the most part, silver coins will range in price from a few dollars over spot to $10-$20 over spot per ounce. The higher the price, the more likely that there is limited quantities of the coin available due to reduced production numbers or higher demand. These prices are reflected in coins that fall into the brilliant uncirculated category of condition.
Proof coins cost a fair amount more than their uncirculated counterparts. Instead of being a few bucks over spot per coin, most proof releases will carry premiums of $50+, with some being sold for several hundred dollars over spot. As is the case with coins and just about anything else, demand for a particular issue will determine how much the proofs are being sold for.