Rare gold and silver coins are certainly valued for their precious metals content, but that is by no means where the line is drawn. The fact of the matter is that the majority of a rare coin’s value stems from how collectable it is, its scarcity, its historical significance, its unique story, and many other factors including its date, interesting manufacturing errors, condition, and more. Although the material that the coin is comprised of is certainly a significant factor, it is by no means what should determine whether or not you buy a coin.
Many people who are interested in rare gold or silver coins overlook the fact that if they wanted to invest in precious metals, they could simply buy bullion coins that don’t carry the collector’s premium that comes with numismatic coins. Most bullion coins, unless they are a limited edition issue, tend to carry only a slightly higher price tag than their spot worth. Investors who want rare coins strictly for their precious metals value would be much better off buying coins or even bars.
Rare coins are for the more adventurous investor who appreciates the potential that coins have as a piece of art, a historical artifact, and a collector’s item. The intrinsic precious metal value helps to ensure that it will never be truly worthless, but rare coins require a much more detail oriented approach. It is much easier to lose money through a poorly planned rare coin investment, but on the other side of the coin it is also much easier to gain a significant profit through a well thought out one.