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Why Was The 1973-S 40% Silver Eisenhower Dollar So Valuable?

 
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 Posted 11/19/2020  6:53 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add CCFPress to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
PCGS - It may hard for some to imagine now, but there once was a time when a typical 1973-S 40% Silver Proof Eisenhower dollar was a $150 coin. That was the case in the early 1980s, when silver prices soared to heights of $50 per ounce and the 1973-S Ike dollar was still a contemporary coin enjoying price buoyancy, as many modern collectible coins tend to do early in their secondary marketplace trading. Today, PCGS CoinFacts reveals a typical PCGS PR67DCAM 40% Silver 1973-S Eisenhower dollar trades for around $25 - a far cry from its early '80s pricing. But many longtime collectors who remember the 1973-S Proof Ike as an expensive coin still want an answer to the question, "why was it so expensive?"


Ike dollar, 1973-S $1 Silver, DCAM, PCGS PR70DCAM


One must revisit 1973 to understand why the 1973 40% Silver Proof Eisenhower dollar trended into the exosphere during its first decade of existence. When the Eisenhower dollar was initially released in 1971, the United States Mint produced just two numismatic offerings: the 40% Silver Uncirculated Eisenhower dollar and 40% Silver Proof Eisenhower dollar. These were dubbed "Blue Pack" and "Brown Pack" Ikes in numismatic parlance, respectively. As the 1971 and 1972 Eisenhower dollars were not issued in ordinary Proof Sets and Uncirculated Sets, collectors who wanted specimens for their collections needed to buy the individual 40% Silver Eisenhower dollars.

However, many collectors scoffed at paying for the 40% Silver Eisenhower dollars, which were issued by the United States Mint at $3 for uncirculated versions and $10 for the proofs. That was a tough sell when an entire 10-coin Uncirculated Set could be bought from the U.S. Mint for $3.50 and a five-coin Proof Set cost $5. Still there were plenty of collectors who ponied up the money to buy the numismatic Eisenhower dollars, which tended to fall in value on the marketplace soon after they were issued.

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 Posted 11/19/2020  7:15 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Ballyhoo to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Great read. So much so I had to continue with the 1971 prototypes linked at the bottom.
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 Posted 11/19/2020  7:18 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add westernsky to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I actually saw an unopened blue box of 5 73-S Ike proofs sell for 1000$ back in the late 70's.

I actually bought an unopened blue box of 5 73-S Ike proofs for 70$ about 2 years ago.

It's a crazy business!
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 Posted 11/19/2020  9:34 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add macmercury to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Love to start a Ike set, but have other commitment to fill, the US Mint program this year is the main reason.

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 Posted 11/19/2020  11:26 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add atticguy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I always enjoy reading these type of posts, and I send my THANKS to those who submit them.

I think the Ike dollars where the first set I completed, and I still like to bring them out of storage and look at them every so often.
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 Posted 11/20/2020  09:24 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add oih82w8 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
As a Type Set Collector, I have a couple of the Ike dollars...but have made an exception of acquiring a few additional Ike's. There is something about the heft of the "Large Dollar" that has such a great appeal!
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 Posted 11/20/2020  10:12 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Excellent article!

I remember when I was a kid in the 1980s dreaming about filling the 1973-S 40% proof Dansco hole some day.

That day arrived in 1993 and, well, when you combine my real world job with a more realistic price... it was not really difficult at all. Heck, I have two of them now, the original in the Dansco and a graded one in my PCGS set.
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 Posted Yesterday   1:33 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Erscolo to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
It may have something to do with the fact that the clad versions, the 1973 P&D, were not minted for circulation and thus only available in uncirculated coin sets. That may have piqued interest.
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 Posted Yesterday   1:47 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Dieuwer to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I actually saw an unopened blue box of 5 73-S Ike proofs sell for 1000$ back in the late 70's.
I actually bought an unopened blue box of 5 73-S Ike proofs for 70$ about 2 years ago.


Is it typical that proof sets drop in value over time?
I have noticed a similar thing with modern Australian silver proof sets.
Edited by Dieuwer
Yesterday 1:47 pm
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 Posted Yesterday   5:21 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add westernsky to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Is it typical that proof sets drop in value over time?


It can happen to any mint products that get hyped on the secondary market.

It happened to the 1950-D nickel in the early 1960's and the proof 40% Ike's in the 70's. More recently it happened to silver eagles marketed as "emergency" issues and "W"quarters salted into regular issue quarter bags.

Some people buy in to the hype. Most people see thru the fog, steer clear of it and just wait for prices to stabilize.
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