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Long considered the cheapest way to buy silver is to purchase pre 1964 U.S. Dimes, Quarters, and Half Dollars
Long considered the cheapest way to buy silver is to purchase pre 1964 U.S. Dimes, Quarters, and Half Dollars. Often referred to as “junk silver” referencing the fact that there is no collector or numismatic value associated with these coins, they are anything but junk, as the alloy of these coins consists of 90% silver and 10% copper. Every $1,000 face value of any combination of these coins contains 715 oz of pure silver. Aside from the low premiums these coins traditionally carry you have the added advantage of smaller units, i.e. greater divisibility.
Packaged in canvas bags of quantities of $500, each bag weighs approximately 27 pounds. Depending upon availability you can choose your denomination in $500 face increments.
Junk silver is low premium silver, not junk.
Junk silver coins qualify as legal tender currency to buy goods and services, though this is not recommended. After all, we are talking about a silver price that was approximately $1.25 an ounce in 1965.
One of the cheapest ways in which to buy silver is to purchase $1,000 face value bags of 90% silver coins that were minted prior to 1965. These coins are still legal U.S. tender and can still be used to purchase goods and services.
However, the coins actual and true value is based on the amount of silver that they contain. Their value is significantly higher than they once were. One dollar is worth more than 20x its face value.
In 1965, the United States Government discontinued the minting of all dimes, quarters and half dollars with 90% silver content and government had a fire sale, basically.
When Lyndon B Johnson signed the Coinage Act of 1964 into law, he gave a doublespeak speech about the change. He dispelled predictions that the price of silver was set to skyrocket and that there would be hoarding of the precious metals by industry and individuals, although the truth would turn out the opposite. He declared that the gutting of US money would not help to destine the nation’s currency for devaluation, although the opposite would be true. He outright lied:
Our new half dollar will continue our silver tradition. Eighty percent silver on the outside and 19 percent silver inside. It will be nearly indistinguishable in appearance from our present half dollar.
The half dollar in 1965 would only be composed of a 40% silver content. That is a vast departure from “our silver tradition.”
Throughout the speech, truths were served, so as to blur the line of reality. Such as that the reason for the Coinage Act, as given, was that silver was a scarce (Read: valuable) material. Some common premises were asserted, such as that of perpetual population and economic growth, although, at least in terms of the latter, there has been a serious contraction in recent years.
And yet, a furthering of the misnomers:
Our present silver coins won’t disappear and they won’t even become rarities. We estimate that there are now 12 billion–I repeat, more than 12 billion silver dimes and quarters and half dollars that are now outstanding. We will make another billion before we halt production. And they will be used side-by-side with our new coins.
The piece is a long list of untrue statements. Mixed in, there are some matter-of-fact statements, but their commonality is sparse. As fans of Bix Weir might take note of, we see that at the bottom of this long list of untruths, one final assertion:
Now, I will sign this bill to make the first change in our coinage system since the 18th century. And to those Members of Congress, who are here on this very historic occasion, I want to assure you that in making this change from the 18th century we have no idea of returning to it.
We are going to keep our eyes on the stars and our feet on the ground.
“I want to assure you that in making this change from the 18th century we have no idea of returning to it.”
The last line is telling. It doesn’t come without plenty of thought behind it. It is almost an allusion to worldwide preservation of resources, manifested in our current economy as austerity. That, instead of reaching the stars, we will keep the collective on a certain level of development.
The government then switched the content of the coins to a much cheaper nickel content that had a much lower intrinsic value.
As the British economist, Sir Thomas Gresham, from the 16th century once said “When coins of equal face value but different intrinsic value are put into circulation side by side, the coin with the higher intrinsic value will be hoarded and only the coin with the lower intrinsic value will remain in circulation”.
You can imagine what happened after the government made this change in 1965, the 90% silver coins started to quickly disappear from circulation. This change created a new industry; the buying, selling and trading of silver coins.
The 90% silver bags come in four versions; U.S. half dollars, U.S. quarters, U.S. dimes and a mixed bag. Each $1,0000 face value bag weighs approximately 800 troy ounces (54 pounds) and contains approximately 715 ounces of pure silver (we will sell you any size bag that you want).
|Denomination:||Dimes, Quarters, & Half Dollars|
|Diameter:||17.9 mm (Dime), 24.3 mm (Quarter), & 30.6 mm (Half Dollar)|
|Thickness:||.90 silver, .10 copper|
|Gross Weight:||2.50 grams (Dime), 6.25 grams (Quarter), 12.5 grams (Half Dollar)|
|Actual Silver Weight:||.07234 troy oz (Dime), .18084 troy oz (Quarter), .36169 troy oz (Half Dollar)|