It's a Coin Explorer Q and A!
Welcome to "The Coin Explorer". I'm your host, Steven Cochran.
Today we're going to explain the difference between silver coins and silver rounds.
Here we have two of the best-selling items at Gainesville Coins: the American Silver
Eagle one ounce bullion coin, and the Buffalo design one ounce generic silver round.
The most common question I hear is, "What is the difference between a silver coin
and a silver round?" The short answer is, a silver coin is legal tender, and a silver
round is not. But, that's not very informative, is it? Let's go into the answer
in a little bit more detail.
A silver coin is issued by a government, and has a denomination, or "face value."
Here is the one dollar denomination of the Silver Eagle. This means that the coin
is considered legal tender, and the government guarantees the purity and weight
of the coin by law. This is reassuring to investors and collectors. It also means
that the government can prosecute anyone making fakes under international counterfeiting
laws, which are much more serious than trademark or copyright laws.
Silver rounds are the same shape as coins, but do not carry a face value and are
not legal tender. They are struck at private mints, for private clients or for general
resale, such as this round from Engelhard. In addition to modern silver rounds,
vintage commemorative and promotional rounds are still found on the market, like
this one for Del Frisco, as well as medallions such as this one of President John
Quincy Adams. There are even silver rounds of cartoon characters.
One of the advantages of silver rounds are lower premiums. Silver rounds allow you
to stack more silver for your dollar. If you buy from a reputable distributor such
as Gainesville Coins, you can be assured of the quality and purity of the rounds
Silver rounds are generally purchased for their metal content, but the thousands
of designs available mean that you can usually find something appealing, or related
to your interests. Silver rounds that revive the classic U.S. coin designs in one
ounce form, such as the Mercury Dime, Buffalo Nickel or Morgan design are very popular.
Another common question we get is, "Should I clean this old coin?" The answer, especially
with old coins, is NO. Even modern coins should not be cleaned, unless you make
sure they are not a rare or uncommon date. Coins that have been cleaned or "dipped"to
make them shiny again lose most, if not all their numismatic value.
Always check a price guide such as the "Red Book for U.S. Coins" or the "Standard
Catalog of World Coins", or an online price guide such as the one at NGCcoin.com
I hope you've enjoyed our show today, and maybe even learned something. "The Coin
Explorer" is part of the Gainesville Coins family, and we hope you'll like us on
Facebook and follow us on Twitter. Also be sure to follow the Gainesville Coins
company blog, where I give away a classic silver art round every month in our "Spot
On!" Silver contest! Until next time, this is The Coin Explorer reminding you that:
It's all about the shinies!