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Silver Coins – How to invest in silver coins?
Investing in silver is considered a method that provides a hedge against inflation, since the price for precious metals continues to rise in times of economic strife. While it is not as liquid as gold (or as pricey), silver is included by many investors in their portfolios, as means to preserve wealth, and as an investment instrument. One popular method, especially for investors who do not move large quantities of silver, is purchasing silver coins, instead of larger quantities. Silver coins are easy to find, easy to trade, and easy to store. Here are the most important things you need to know about silver coins and why should you bother to invest your money in them.
 
How to invest or buy silver coins
When investing in silver coins, there are certain aspects you should keep in mind before making your purchases. First things first, you need to identify a reputable dealer and purchase your silver coins from them, as trust is a currency with great importance on this market. Not everyone is entitled to mint and sell silver coins, and you should aim at buying silver that is certified and guaranteed by a recognized entity first and foremost.

Another important thing to keep in mind is that there are different types of silver coins you can purchase as investment. Some of them are called silver bullion coins, and their value is established based on the amount of silver they contain. Others also have a numismatic value, especially those that were in circulation at a certain time. Junk silver is also available in the form of coins, but their value is much lower, and you should not have great expectations about these silver coins.

Keep in mind that the spot price for silver, the one you see shown on TV and by specialized magazines, is not the same price you will pay. For precious metals, such as silver, a premium is applied by dealers, and you, as a buyer, have to pay for it.

Always deal with a reputable source when you want to purchase silver coins. Your coins must be endorsed by a recognized entity, or, otherwise, you will not be able to sell them back, when in need of liquid cash.
 
What are the various types of silver coins available?
One of the most important things you need to learn more about before proceeding to invest in silver coins is about various types of coins available.

First of all, the most common are silver bullion coins. These are minted by reputable mints, and they are endorsed and certified. They come in various weights, and their value is calculated based on purity and the amount of silver they contain. For investors, they represent a safe investment, and they are the most liquid.

Numismatic coins represent a second category. Their value is not calculated only based on the amount of silver they contain. They also carry a collectible value, which is calculated based on many different factors, market variations being among them. These are not usually recommended for first time investors, as it takes a lot of experience and expertise to identify the best collectible coins and their right price. Usually, only the most experienced collectors are involved in buying and selling rare numismatic coins.

Commemorative coins are sometimes minted and sold to the public. They also have an inherent value, independent of the amount of silver they contain. Based on their purity and scarcity, they often represent a sought after prize for investors.

Junk silver coins also represent a category of coins you may need to know about. These are coins that used to be in circulation before 1964, but their value is not very high, since they do not have an important content of silver. They can contain between 35% and 90% silver, but the silver they are made of is not .999 pure silver, as requested by the market. All in all, they are not the best instrument for investment.
 
Purity available
Like gold, silver comes in various purities. Some silver bullion bars have an outstanding purity of .999.

However, ultra fine silver, as it is called, is not always used in making silver bullion coins, because the metal is too soft to be turned into durable coins. Still, there are famous silver coins, such as the Canadian Maple Leaf silver coin, which is made of ultra fine silver.

Sterling silver, which is usually used for jewelry and silverware, has a .925 purity. It is not often encountered in silver coins. Silver coins minted in the US before 1964 have a purity of .900. However, a much smaller percentage of silver can be found in junk coins. There are also silver coins from Mexico which have a .980 purity, and British silver coins with a .9584 purity.
 
Well known silver coins
When you are looking to invest in silver coins, you need to know some things about the most popular ones. Some of them are highly collectible, others are just regular silver bullion coins with a great reputation. Here are the best known silver coins worth investing in.
 
Perth Mint silver coin
This silver coin is minted in Australian and has a good collectible value, besides its value in silver. It is made of .999 pure silver and it comes in various designs released in limited editions every year. The reasons why Perth Mint silver coins are so largely appreciated are: they have an outstanding purity, they come in various weights (the 1 troy oz coin is the most popular), and they make great gifts, since they are so beautifully designed. They have the required legal tender, and they are very liquid, should you decide to transform them back into real money.
 
American Silver Eagle coin
The American Silver Eagle coin represents the official silver bullion coin of the United States. The first ever made was released by the United States Mint in 1986, and it has been appreciated by investors in precious metals ever since. The only available weight for the American Silver Eagle coin is 1 troy oz, and its purity is .999, as required by standards for silver bullion coins. Collectors can also find special limited editions, which means that this silver coin has more than just its value in silver. One of the characteristics of this coin is that it is minted through a special process that make the surface reflect the design like in a mirror effect. The face value of this silver coin is 1USD.
 
Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin
The Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin is minted by the Royal Canadian Mint and it has an outstanding purity of .9999. The 1 troy oz coin is very popular with investors, and because of its high purity, it was first valued at 5 Canadian dollars, the highest price for a silver coin of this weight. One way of telling whether you are purchasing a Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin or not is the so called ‘milk spot’, a small white blemish incorporated with the coin in the minting process.
 
Chinese Silver Panda coin
The Chinese Silver Panda coin is the silver bullion coin minted by the People’s Republic of China. Various weights, from 1/2 oz to one kilogram, are issued each year. During the first three years, from 1983 to 1985, the Chinese Silver Panda coin was made of silver with .900 purity, and there were only 10,000 coins minted yearly. Later on, the 1 troy oz silver coin was made of sterling silver, with a purity of .925. From 1999, the Chinese mints started to struck the coin in .999 pure silver.
 
Austrian Philharmonic silver coin
The Austrian Philharmonic silver coin was minted for commemorative purposes in Austria, to celebrate the presence of this country among the first 12 adopting the Euro as their currency. The most popular weight is the 1 troy oz coin, which has a face value of 1.5 Euros. The silver coin is minted with silver of an outstanding purity of .999, which makes it highly liquid, since it can be easily sold for cash almost anywhere in the world. The Austrian Philharmonic silver coin is also highly recognizable, due to its popularity.
 
Mexican Silver Libertad coin
The Mexican Silver Libertad coin is the official silver coin of Mexico, and it is struck in .999 fine silver. Various weights are available: 1/20, 1/10, 1/4, 1/2, and 1 troy ounce, which are the most common, but also 2 oz, 5 oz and one kilogram, for investors who want to make a larger purchase. The latest version of the coin features the Winged Victoria on one side, and the coat of arms of the country on the other. Because of its outstanding purity, and the large variety of weights, this silver coin is very popular beyond the country’s borders and it is often included by investors in their portfolios.