• seperator

Would a silver dime work?

Legislation in Congress that calls for a March of Dimes commemorative silver dollar has some collectors slapping their foreheads.

To them, the obvious commemorative vehicle to commemorate the national charity that helped to wipe out polio is the coin that is in the name: the dime.

It seems logical.

But if Congress did authorize such a coin, would collectors be friendly to it?

I would like to believe that they would, but my gut tells me there might be problems. The negative scenario is they would react to it like collectors did to uncirculated two-roll Lincoln cent sets that the Mint offered to get the 2009 commemorative cent designs into collector hands and again in 2010 to get the new Union Shield design to them.

Instead of looking at it as paying roughly 14 cent apiece for each of the cents offered, collectors figured two rolls at $8.95 plus the $4.95 handling charge for a total of $13.90 was price gouging.  Paying $12.90 for $1 face value in coins was considered too much.

That logic might easily be applied to a March of Dimes dime.

The silver value would be roughly 24 times face value, or $2.40 at present silver bullion prices, but the Mint would not be able to cover its costs if it essentially sold the coin for double silver value.

First off, there would be the surcharge that is placed on every commemorative coin to cover. How much would it be?

If the congressional sponsors set it low, there is no way it could raise much money unless multiple millions are sold.

If it were, say, $2 a coin and collectors went crazy and bought 2 million of them, it would raise $4 million. Would that potentially satisfy the sponsors?

Also, the Mint needs to make a little something.

At the current price of the Infantry Soldier uncirculated dollar, the Mint is charging $18.95 over silver value and $10 of that is the surcharge. Therefore, the Mint is working on roughly an $8.95 margin for each coin to cover packaging and all the costs of striking.

Would it need as much for a dime?

Say the Mint could shave it to $6 per coin.

We would then have a coin with $2.40 in silver in it, $2 in surcharge applied to it and $6 in Mint costs, or $10.40 per coin. At $4.95 for shipping and handling, the collector who only wanted one coin for his collection would pay $15.35 in the best possible case.

Who will go for that deal?

This entry was posted in Buzz. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Would a silver dime work?

  1. clairhardesty says:

    I would love to see a silver dime for this purpose. I did a lot of volunteering for MoD in high school and understand just how much the little contributions helped win the fight against polio (I am old enough that I always had one or two classmates that had been affected by the disease). I think that offerings like a single dime, a half roll ($2.50 face) and a full roll ($5.00 face) would be widely accepted. An alternative would be to have something like five designs and sell them individually or as a set. At today’s spot (~$34) BU rolls of dimes retail for about $165 so the mint should be able to come up with any number of ways to attract silver dime buyers, even with modern production costs and respectable surcharges.

  2. ercw2004 says:

    I would be most attracted to a 90% silver and 10% copper commemorative silver dollar in a 1.5 inch diameter and weighting in at 26.73 grams, provided that obverse and reverse side of the commemorative is the exact replica of the 1930s mercury dime. That way we get our dime, the mint get their profit and the sponsors are able to get an adequate surcharge out of it without having to over saturate the mintage. And who knows, maybe the US Mint can even throw in a 50,000 limited edition custom folder of a world map with the commemorative silver dollar in the center surrounded by four single Silver Roosevelt dimes on each corner. Name the price, and I would definitely buy it.

  3. architect1966 says:

    I believe an excellent concept for a March of Dimes commemorative silver dollar would be to include an actual-size replica of the obverse of the Mercury dime on the obverse of the dollar, and an actual-size replica of the reverse of the Mercury dime on the reverse of the dollar. The dime designs should be off-center to allow for a substantial amount of space for other devices on the silver dollar. This could be an attractive 21st century coin incorporating classic 20th century numismatic art. The date on the Mercury dime should be 1938, the year the March of Dimes was founded.

    One advantage of this concept is the Mercury dime image would include the requisite inscriptions \Liberty,\ \In God We Trust,\ \United States of America\ and \E Pluribus Unum.\ These words would not have to appear elsewhere on the silver dollar, so the rest of the design would remain relatively uncluttered. Commemorative coins from other countries often are more attractive than U.S. commemoratives, one reason being the former generally have fewer inscriptions than the latter.

    I believe such a coin would be especially popular with collectors. It would be even more popular if it were sold in a special set including a matte proof silver Roosevelt dime from the West Point Mint. This set would be similar to the 1998 Kennedy collector set that contains an uncirculated RFK commemorative silver dollar, and a special 1998-S matte proof silver JFK half dollar. Such a March of Dimes set could provide collectors with a superb silver dollar, and a very special Roosevelt dime. The Roosevelt dime is, of course, a tribute to both FDR and the charity he founded. High sales of such a set would translate into substantial funds raised, via surcharges, for a worthy cause.

Leave a Reply