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Thoughts On American Innovation Reverse Proof $1 Coins?

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Canada
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 Posted 10/02/2021  7:50 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add jazzy to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Wanted to gather some thoughts on the American Innovation Reverse Proof coins.

The US Mint has produced a lot of collector-oriented coins over the past years. It seems this year the attention has been focused on the silver (and gold) eagles as well as the revised Morgan/Peace dollars.

The American Innovation Dollars not only interest me on a topical level, but it seems they are not selling as many. The reverse proofs have the lowest mintage, under 50,000 for most issues.

If I were to buy a decades-old coin with a mintage that low, the price of under $12 would seem like a bargain. Even the American Eagle coins have higher numbers produced and are selling at premiums on eBay after sellout. A lot of it is hype, but why are we not seeing this with the innovation dollars?

I understand that there will be 57 designs released over 15 years. Maybe that number is dissuading people from buying all of them. But consider I buy one of each coin, from all finishes, each year. I'm paying under $100 a year maybe, assuming I buy singles of the circulation dollars from a dealer. That's comparable to just one silver eagle at issue price, but I get 16 coins instead.

Maybe I should be concerned that these coins are not selling fast? But I feel like with coins in particular, the ones that were not produced in large quantities generally appreciate the fastest.

I look at the classic commemoratives of the early 20th century. These were produced in great variety and quantity (much like the Mint is doing now) and did not sell well. Yet, now, they sell at high prices, even taking into account the increase in silver value.

On the other extreme, I look at the 'First Spouse' gold coins which are produced (if I recall) in the 4-digit mintage numbers. Yet I can never see these coins being worth much more than melt value. I feel, though, this has something to do with the limited appeal and high price point to begin with.

I don't know where the American Innovation Dollars stand in the spectrum, especially the reverse proofs. I do not mind buying them as part of my collection to begin with, but I'm curious if others share the same thoughts as I have stated above. Or maybe you can share a different perspective. I personally find these coins are going a bit under the radar compared to the more popular releases. What do you think?


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 Posted 10/02/2021  8:18 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add BStrauss3 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I think assuming they will increase in value is foolish. There are plenty of examples of modern coins where that hasn't happened. Only a very few special circumstances where they are holding value above issue print.

HOWEVER, you are correct, it's an inexpensive hobby and if it makes YOU happy, then bleep everybody else.
-----Burton
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Life member: Numismatics International, CONECA
Member: TNA, FtWCC, NETCC, OnLinw Coin Club
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Valued Member
Canada
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 Posted 10/02/2021  8:36 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jazzy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I agree that they will not increase in value in the short term. But my comments mostly focus on the long-term, maybe 30-50 years from now.

Will there be 50,000 collectors of these coins then? I don't know, I cannot predict the future. But the amount of coins produced seems to be on the lower-end of the spectrum compared to most modern issues, which is why I wonder what people will value from the current era in say, 2050.

But yes--the most important thing for me when collecting is enjoyment. It is not my primary focus to make money, it would just be a nice end result.
Edited by jazzy
10/02/2021 8:37 pm
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United States
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 Posted 10/02/2021  9:19 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Raised on rock to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I have collected all the innovation dollars from the start and will continue. Once I start something, I have a hard time stopping and yes this is a cheap collection to put together.
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United States
263 Posts
 Posted 10/02/2021  9:26 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Eagle4Life to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Agree with above posters. It's a relatively cheap series to put together, so I am collecting all the P,D, S proof, and S reverse proofs. I got a CAPS album for P and D and the S will stay in OGP.
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 Posted 10/02/2021  10:04 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hokiefan_82 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
While, as you said, you can't predict the future, just remember that all of these coins will be essentially perfect, mostly PF70 or PF69, and virtually 100% will survive.

You mention the classic silver commemoratives as being produced in great quantity, but with a few exceptions they were not. There are 144 individual coins in that set, and 83 of those had mintages of 10,010 or less. Only 25 of the 144 had mintages over 50,000. Even so, the prices for classic commemoratives are generally lower now than they were a decade ago.

You should collect what you enjoy, as trying to guess what coins could be a good investment is just that, a guess. And for modern issues, it's even a riskier guess.
Edited by hokiefan_82
10/02/2021 10:05 pm
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Canada
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 Posted 10/02/2021  10:32 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jazzy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
You mention the classic silver commemoratives as being produced in great quantity, but with a few exceptions they were not. There are 144 individual coins in that set, and 83 of those had mintages of 10,010 or less. Only 25 of the 144 had mintages over 50,000. Even so, the prices for classic commemoratives are generally lower now than they were a decade ago.


Thanks for this information. I never really studied this series to be honest, but, from my understanding they were produced in higher quantity than they could sell. I suppose that is the analogy I was trying to make.
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 Posted 10/03/2021  12:07 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hokiefan_82 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
OK, I see your analogy, and yes, you're correct - I should have used the word "distribution" instead of "mintage". Many of them had mintage numbers higher (sometimes FAR higher) than the ultimate distribution numbers, and the coins not sold were usually returned and melted.
Edited by hokiefan_82
10/03/2021 12:09 am
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 Posted 10/03/2021  12:56 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add atticguy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I'm a 'thumbs-up' guy with the AI dollar coins. Some people, like my buddy, are not. He calls almost all the post 1960 coins 'junk'; but to each their own.
As stated before, being 100% uncirculated and almost all being MS69 or MS70, they are bound to be a beautiful set at the end. I DO NOT think they will ever be valued higher than original costs (actually, probably lower), but I'm not into making money by collecting. Acquiring coin sets is more of a repose for me.
I am a little upset about the change in the release the RP AI's will now have, but than again the expense should be lowered.
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 Posted 10/03/2021  1:29 pm  Show Profile   Check jacrispies's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add jacrispies to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Great observation with the innovation dollar mintages. Nobody can say exactly what the future holds, but I say it is worth the shot. Maybe I'll keep an eye out for these.
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United States
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 Posted 10/03/2021  2:50 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Ducky12 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I think about the same at times and I mildly collect innovation dollars proofs and reverse proofs. It's a love hate relationship. I enjoy the designs but find them generally overpriced and the size of large cents, so I just call them my big penny collection and let it at that.

Ideas of cornering the market due to unloved/or loved and disposable come up many times and in many different collecting fields. There was a collector that wrote years back about his attempts to "corner" the market for the future (Rinker on collectibles). If I recall, he bought a bunch of toys back in the late 1980s or early 1990s and kept them in mint condition in the hopes that in the future he'd make a profit. What he found (if I remember correctly), was that it was terribly difficult to predict what would be valuable and I don't think he got it right. Realize this guy is/was a sharp person in collecting.

You are correct that some things that are not popular do become very popular in the future. It's a good position to take - to keep away from what's "popular" because prices are already hot. There was a coin design back in the early 1900s that when it came out people thought it was terribly ugly. No one saved them, and they were expensive in value at the time so we're spent. They were the barber head series. These days good examples sell for more than face value. But it's not always the case with some things. The people that pulled 3 cent nickels from circulation are still waiting for the world to recognize their genius.

Read an article on a roundtable meeting with mint director Ryder a few weeks back, and his goal upon coming into his job was to increase mint products to make the mint profitable. His GOAL as I understand was to create a limited edition market like collector plates or metal cookie tins companies sell. The mint created market and supplied it, not for meaning (such as use in commerce or practical reasons), but to fulfill a demand where people are speculating that x would be valuable some day. He's not the 1st to do "limited edition" marketing. And millions still buy into it in every industry.

Innovation dollars in my mind are a weird combination of both supplying a collector market that is already saturated and "burnt out", but also supplying pretty nice designs compared to the bland (imo) roosevelt/lincoln/washington king coin series of the past 100 years. Numismatics is hot, but the coins lack metal content, lack of practicality since no one uses them, they're not out of production (present day is discounted), and they also don't have pedigree (they aren't derived from anything.it's just they appear and have no function.making them a series of commemorative coins because the mint needs to maintain production capacity to keep employees busy I suppose). Why they have billions of other "golden" dollar coins sitting on shelves and want to build a new warehouse for more is beyond me.

But things can change and maybe people will "miss" them. If the US fractures and the states are not so "United" or if the currency goes digital and holdouts say they'll go back to gold/sliver/copper, maybe there will be demand/market for them. Or maybe times get hard and no one has a need for "frivolous excesses" of the past. Proof coins can be found in circulation for a reason.

I do like the designs but don't know if they'll go anywhere. Ultimately there is no control if someone else in the future wants to purchase our stuff. It's difficult enough to predict if we, ourselves, will want it in the future.

Anyway, my rambling. Thanks for opportunity to vent.
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 Posted 10/04/2021  11:31 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I am collecting the standard proof issues. I decided against the reverse proof because I did not think the OGP merited the premium price. I may have to revisit them now they are being sold as an annual set.


to the Community, Ducky12!
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 Posted 10/04/2021  2:52 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Big-Kingdom to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I started with the reverse proofs, when they increased the price from $9.95 to $11.50 I stopped buying them, $46 a year is a bit steep for 4 dollars, I was on the fence about it already it being a 10 year series and all, and the cost being $10 already. the price bump chased me off.
We will see what they price it at as a 4 coin set this year, if they can get it under $40, I might decide to go back for it again, but not a cent over that.

as it is, they can't even sell 50,000 of them from last year. they still have like 5-10K of last years designs left they can't sell each, and that's after they reduced the mintages by a 3rd for each design.

I dont' see this working out and it just being a money pit really, I like them don't get me wrong, I can't really justify buying them and spending my time on them, 50 coins at $11.50 each, $575 over 10 years for $50 FV and mintages that don't sell out, even after reducing it by a 3rd to try to sell them out...

I dunno. just seems like a waste of a good idea.
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 Posted 10/05/2021  05:19 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Conder101 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
$575 over 10 years for $50 FV and mintages that don't sell out, even after reducing it by a 3rd to try to sell them out...

$575 over 10 years works out to risking $4.80 a month, and you still have the $50 face value which brings the risk down to $4.38 a month. I'm not well off, but $4.38 a month isn't something I would miss. My only problem is I HATE reverse proofs, and think they are terribly ugly.
Gary Schmidt
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 Posted 10/05/2021  08:17 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Another rather artful selling gimmick.
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 Posted 10/06/2021  7:43 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add coinnewcomer1 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I like collecting the American Innovation Dollars for a few reasons:

a) The designs are some of the most attractive I have seen in circulating and NIFC coins. Not all but the quality level is a bit higher than some of the commemorative gold and silver and circulating coinage. In this respect they are very similar to the Sac/Native American dolalrs.

b) I like the mintage limits on the Reverse Proofs and the low sales for modern proofs for the proofs (95,000 for the 2020 to around just over 200,000 the 2018). And it is nice to see which designs benefits more from proof or rev proof strike

c) The costs are affordable although with any NIFC coin offered in bags and rolls of uncs, you can end up spending more than planned. Aside from that small risk quite managable to collect P,D,S Proof and S Rev Proof of all coins.

d) Very informative with ample history.

e) You can spend them

What I do NOT like or lukewarm about the AI coins

a) Survival rates will be high with the only opportunities for use being the coins colelctors spend after they find some BUs in bag and rolls bought. The other possibility is heirs spending/depositing them or we actually go off the paper dollar.

b) Rolls and bags of the 2018 - 2020 coins are still on sale at the US Mint. It is he Mint Director who can authorize when to pull them from sale at the US Mint. Therefore mintages are allowed to grow although the average mintage after the 2018 introductory coin is around 450,000. This does make it an attractive series to collect the Uncs - for now.

c) Although the Proofs and Revs grade usually very high the uncs I find from my experience range from MS61 to as high as MS67+/MS 68. The average range is MS63 to MS 66+. It depends on the issue too. I like you have an opportunity to train yourself to develop an eye grading Uncs but you need to get 4 rolls or a bag or two to find MS66 coins and possibly higher. Finding those in MS68 is not easy. So to do so you need to spend a bit to have a sufficient supply to raise the odds of finding one. However the return would likely not match the money spent to find one at present. Rolls seems to do best on the secondary market.

It is a fun series to collect. What I would urge collectors to do is spend some of the coins gotten from bags and rolls. People love getting a brand new golden dollar and some of the designs are captivating. At least this would reduce the population of UNc coins that are mostly in the hands of collectors and entice coin roll searchers to look at for one.
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