Author Topic: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?  (Read 7895 times)

Offline ag2

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Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« on: March 09, 2011, 09:18:51 PM »
As a silver newbie, I occassionally stop at a few pawn shops on the way home.  Usually, they don't have any silver coins or rounds.  Today I found the following:
1934 Peace Dollar $24.95 -purchased
1922 Peace Dollar $29.95 - purchased
1921 Morgan Dollar $29.95 - purchased
1921s Morgan Dollar $49.95 - Did not purchase
Winchester indiana .999 silver round $36.00 - purchased
1968 Mexico Olympics round $30.00 - purchased
handful of silver quarters at $6.50 each - did not purchase
handful of silver dimes at $2.99 each - did not purchase

Silly me.  I walked out thinking that the Peace and Morgan dollars were 1 ounce and I kept thinking to myself, these guys are usually better at following the price of silver, but I'm not going to say anything.

After I arrived home, I realized that the peace and Morgan dollars are not a full troy ounce.  Oops
While in the pawn shop, I did the flick test on the Olympics round and it sounded the same as the Winchester Indiana round.  I just looked it up.  72% pure silver and has an Actual Silver Weight of .5208 Troy Ounces.  I think I got taken.

I'll consider it a good lesson.

Offline ag2

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2011, 09:30:19 PM »
Maybe I should return to the pawn shop and buy those quarters.  Coinflation shows them worth $6.53 today.  Silver is at $36.13 today.

Offline Crash

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2011, 10:05:36 PM »
Depending on the grade of the Peace Dollars and Morgan Dollar, you may have done real good. Don't go by the silver content in those, go by collectability. I have a 1889 CC Morgan that's worth $700 minimum and a 2008 silver Ron Paul NORFED that's worth $450, for example.

I found prices on the ones you listed. I can't give you a straight quote because I don't know what shape either are in, but here goes:

1921 Morgan Dollar (Last year of the Morgan): $31 - $36
1934 Peace Dollar: $34.99 - $41.00 (can you see a mint mark? That makes a difference too.)
1922 Peace Dollar (First year of the Peace): $34.99 - $80

Mintmarks appear underneath the word 'One' on the reverse of the Peace Dollars and above the letters DO in DOLLAR, on the back of the Morgan. If you have a D (Denver) Morgan, it's worth more. They will have either a D or S or won't have a mintmark at all. S is San Francisco and blank is Philly. If you want a better quote, take them to a reputable coin dealer and have them appraised. They usually love to see coins like that.

Hope that helped.

Offline tamo42

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2011, 07:51:23 AM »
Yeah, overall not a bad deal. Selling Morgans and Peace dollars for collector value is difficult though. You'd have to sell it to a collector. Wholesale buyers will give you a slight premium over spot, but not much.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2011, 08:05:15 AM »
Depending on the grade of the Peace Dollars and Morgan Dollar, you may have done real good. Don't go by the silver content in those, go by collectability. I have a 1889 CC Morgan that's worth $700 minimum and a 2008 silver Ron Paul NORFED that's worth $450, for example.

I wouldn't count on the collector value for those.  Your Morgan will probably keep that collectible value, but if I had a chance to sell off a silver Ron Paul for $450, I'd do it in a heartbeat.  Something like that has that value because of current events, not an underlying collectible value.

I saw it with Baseball cards.  I have a Cal Ripken rookie card.  Back "in the day" that had a collectible value of ~$130, now I'd be lucky to get $40.  Granted, silver has an underlying value and baseball cards are a piece of card stock.

Offline 4bull

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2011, 09:01:15 AM »
I think you did alright , i found a stack of morgans for 25. ea. yesterday.
Theres less silver out there each week.

Offline Crash

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2011, 02:29:01 PM »
Collectors are easy to find. I have 2 right now that I'm in touch with at least twice a week. With silver going to over $100 an ounce in the near future (and that's from very reliable sources), there's no real chance of losing.

I watched the 1889 CC  go from $300 to $700 and it won't go down. No real chance.

Offline TexDaddy

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2011, 06:11:51 PM »
Morgan and Peace dollars were both minted containing .7734 troy oz silver, so at the current spot of $35.36 they would contain about $27.35 worth of silver, depending on how worn they might be. Silver dollars of almost any date or mint mark will usually carry some premium over the spot, so as far as the dolllars you bought, I think you did well.

At the same spot, the quarters would be worth about $6.39 each, the dimes about 2.56 each. At my local shop, when available, dimes, quarters and halves are always priced at the same multiple of face. That is to say a half dollar would cost the same as five dimes or two quarters. Today, it would have been something like 25.5 times face value.

The silver market is one thing, the numismatic market another. I decided to get of collecting and into precious metals instead. I was able to do quite well selling the numismatics I had and the PMs I bought have gone up much faster than the numismatics I had. Of course, I didn't have anything as cool as a
1889 Carson City minted silver dollar. For sentimental reasons, I did keep my 1884 O (New Orleans mint) silver dollar my Granny gave me, but that is another story.

Thing is, numismatics require much more specialized knowledge than PMs. If this interests you, go for it. I just am not anymore. There is an overlap for sure, but, personally, I am in it for the gold and silver content. I do prefer coins over rounds or bars, but I've said that before.

I think you caught the main lesson. Know what it is you are buying.


Offline ag2

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2011, 09:18:33 PM »
Tex and all,
I'm really interested in the PM side of this hobby ($$$ hedge).  I have a slight interest in the numismatic side, but not enough to pursue/invest.  I really just want to learn a bit about what I own for sentimental reasons only.  And frankly, the way our economy is floundering, I expect PMs to outperform numismatics by far.


Offline Crash

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2011, 10:38:10 PM »
PMs and Numismatics are on the same scale. You just have to do the math on the percentage of silver or gold in the Numismatics.

My 1889 CC was given to me by my grandmother who found it in my great Uncle's wallet when he passed away. I've had it since 1972, and plan on passing it to my son. The Ron Paul and others are purely speculation and the value will be determined when the trial winds up, I'm sure. (See other post)


Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2011, 10:14:26 AM »
Collectors are easy to find. I have 2 right now that I'm in touch with at least twice a week. With silver going to over $100 an ounce in the near future (and that's from very reliable sources), there's no real chance of losing.

I watched the 1889 CC  go from $300 to $700 and it won't go down. No real chance.
All I can say about this is there were "very reliable sources" that said there was no way that there would be a dot com crash, or that the bottom would fall out of housing market.

Also, telling a new person to the world of silver that there is no real chance of losing is doing a disservice to them.  It is setting them up for failure.  There is always a chance that the bottom will fall out of a market.  Or even that the coin that he bought is counterfeit.

Offline Crash

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Re: Pawn shop silver: was this a deal or no deal?
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2011, 11:08:23 AM »
All I can say about this is there were "very reliable sources" that said there was no way that there would be a dot com crash, or that the bottom would fall out of housing market.

Also, telling a new person to the world of silver that there is no real chance of losing is doing a disservice to them.  It is setting them up for failure.  There is always a chance that the bottom will fall out of a market.  Or even that the coin that he bought is counterfeit.

Ok, simple economics here. The only way the "bottom can fall out" of the precious metals market is through strengthening of the fiat currency we now have or a huge discovery of new silver resources. That's not going to happen because silver is in very short supply, there are no new discoveries. and the US dollar is dropping like a rock. In fact, the US dollar is dropping yet again today and that will boost the value of commodities, especially ones that are short in supply, such as silver.

There is only so much silver in the world. The intrinsic value of silver will not go down. There may be short fluctuations in the market (due to sell offs and such), but they will be short lived due to demand for silver. If you are investing in silver or gold, you better be in it for the long run. I have been since 1972. I've seen ups and downs, but I'm still better off now because of my PM holdings.

Now, that said, if you notice, everything's "going up in price". That is actually a false statement. Things aren't going up in price, the US Dollar is dropping in value (thanks to QE & Bernanke) and it takes more dollars to buy the same amount of gas, food, silver, etc.. So silver hasn't only gone up in value from a shortage of the metal, but also due to a drop in the US Dollar value. BTW, silver's up 74 cents an oz at mid-day and the US Dollar has dropped .43 to 76.83 (the danger level for the dollar is 77, anything below that and we're in trouble, keep that in mind when China dumps the US dollar very soon).

Bottom line is, silver, gold, platinum...will always be worth the same, it's the fiat currency that will fluctuate.

Oh and on counterfeits? They're out there but are very easy to spot and not real common with coinage due to the cost to mint the coins then make them look old. Reputable dealers won't sell counterfeits unless they specify they are counterfeits.

I actually picked up 3 counterfeits this month just because they were counterfeits. They were marked as such and still are. I am using them for educational purposes. I show people the real ones, then the counterfeits so they can see the differences, and man, there are differences! I can't tell you how many times I've heard "DAMN it's not even close!" Especially with the counterfeit NORFED Ron Pauls. They're off by size, weight, design...and if there's a real concern on counterfeits, just buy graded coins that have gone through NGS, PCGS....and are sealed, then there's no doubt at all.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2011, 11:25:34 AM by Crash »