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e-Letters: Sept. 29, 2020

From the Sept. 4 Numismatic News e-Newsletter. 

Do you think 90 percent silver is the best form of silver investment? Why or why not?

Here are some answers sent from our e-newsletter readers.

Yes, I do think it is a good investment because the U.S. made 90 percent coins for years, so they are easy to come by and you can buy them cheap when silver is low and sell them for lots when silver is high.

Conner Hopfer
Salem, Ore.

Yes, I believe 90 percent silver, as well as 40 percent silver, are a good investment. It’s always a possibility that silver will rise in price. If not, it’s always worth face value.

Batavia, Ohio

Yes, because it’s not only the silver content but the numismatic value as well. Plus, it’s a thrill to watch over and over again the coins in your collection. It’s like family and not just bulk globs of silver.

John Essington

In a crisis situation, 90 percent United States silver coins would be the optimum means of paying for something. It comes in denominations of 10 cents, 25 cents, 50 cents and $1 and they are recognized by people. Obviously, their value would be more than their face value, but it would be easy to determine the value of a dime, a quarter, or a half dollar. For example, people would know a dime is worth $2.50, a quarter worth $6, a half dollar worth $12 and silver dollars worth $24. It’s easy to remember as a medium of exchange.

Name and address withheld

If a coin, for example, has 1 ounce of silver in its composition, then I suppose it really doesn’t matter whether it’s 90 percent or 99 percent unless you intend on melting it down to plain silver. I’ve never understood why some so-called “collectors” would buy raw precious metals in ounce-weight when they could buy a collectible coin instead with the same weight of gold, silver or platinum, thereby increasing the value of what they own from two angles instead of just one.

Steve McGowan
Algonac, Mich.

No, I buy them for my collection but prefer bullion as an investment.

Name and address withheld

I believe 90 percent U.S. silver coins are one of the best ways to buy and own silver. It is minted to an exact government standard and is dated. No need to have it assayed.

Michael McKinnon
Southport, N.C.

Yes, if you hunt you can find some fabulous deals on 90 percent silver at around spot or a wee bit over. Paying the premiums on silver Eagles, in my opinion, is silly and overrated. I got four rolls of proof Washington quarters for $162 a roll when the silver price was about $5 a coin, or $200 a roll.

Bill Zearfoss
Philadelphia, Pa.

Forget about 90 percent silver. If you want to invest in silver, buy the new American silver Eagles in 99.9 percent silver.

Name and address withheld

Absolutely. One, it is easily recognized, is rarely questioned, retains its “spending face value,” which is most likely irrelevant to its silver content and can be brokered in small convenient units.

Most transactions are $1,000 face value bags; but, coin silver can be sold and bought in smaller increments. Also, there can be the “fun of the search” going through an accumulation of old silver; you might discover something.

Decades ago, one of my primary mentors, one referred to in a previous Friday Poll Question, preached, “purchase and save silver in various formats: coin, one ounce, small ounce bars and silver Eagles, which allows diversity in selling and unloading.”

So, yes “coin silver” is preferred but diversity offers more opportunity if the need or chance arises. Lately, that seems almost daily!

Michael S. Turrini
Vallejo, Calif.

Since this format encompasses most U.S. silver coins, I would say that is a good investment form. While pure silver bullion is an attractive format, I think that over time investing in regular-issue U.S. coins will probably be more valuable.

Robert Kane
Johnstown, Pa.