Most silver dollars investors are looking for MS-64 and above for their acquisition. However, the vast majority of US silver dollars fall into the MS-60 to MS-63 grade range.
Morgan dollar collections generally fall into 3 categories: circulated, mixed and uncirculated. Before the advent of third party grading services, most collectors were interested in the best they could afford. That generally meant uncirculated coins for most dates and AU-58 coins for the more expensive dates.
With only a few exceptions, large premiums for better quality uncirculated silver dollars were unusual. However, with the advent of graded coins, a much stronger demand started to appear for the higher grade dollars.
Some key date Morgans are all but impossible to find above MS-62. Therefore, they represent some of the best values in the Morgan series. That is, key date MS-62 Morgans are better investments than common date examples in MS-64 to MS-66.
The population reports for MS-60 to MS-62 dollar coins are less accurate than MS-64 to MS-66 perhaps, because of 4 factors:
- It often costs too much to have inexpensive, common date silver dollar coins graded unless they appear to be superb
- Most investors want MS-63 or higher for material that really isn’t very rare.
- A large number of MS-60 to MS-62 dollars are returned to the submitter with a “no grade”, because of cleaning, questionable toning, or damage.
- Coins in all grades are broken out of their holders and are resubmitted in hopes of a higher grade. This drastically skews population reports.
Top 10 Key Date Morgans in Order of Their Scarcity. 1895-P has no circulated mintage and therefore isn’t included:
- 1893-S very rare in any uncirculated condition
- 1892-S also very rare in any uncirculated condition. Underpriced compared to 1893-S
- 1895-O rare in uncirculated condition. AU sliders keep the price and perceived scarcity down
- 1894-S rare in uncirculated condition. AU sliders keep price and perceived scarcity down
- 1903-S when found in MS condition, will often grade MS-63 and higher
- 1889-CC very scarce and very popular
- 1894-P very scarce
- 1893-O very scarce
- 1904-P when found in MS condition, will be in the higher grades
- 1901-P very scarce. AU sliders keep price and scarcity perception down
Value lies in higher grade common date MS Morgan dollars, but key dates in lower MS grades are a bargain compared to the premiums for the very few mid to high grade key date examples available.
Check out other informative articles on this website using the Search, Recent Articles, or Category features on the upper right side of this page.
If you are interested in buying gold or silver bullion at the lowest price, check out BullionVault.
If you are interested in learning more about rare American coin, or foreign coin collecting and investing see NumisMaster from Krause Publications.