Why Are Certain Coins Called “Junk Silver”?

Ever wanted to know why certain coins are called "junk silver"? Get up-to-date information and reliable answers to your bullion and precious metals related questions here at ModernCoinMart's Complete Bullion Resource Center.

Junk silver, or junk coins, are silver coins that were minted and that entered circulation before 1964. These coins are typically not highly regarded for their numismatic value but rather for their silver content. Junk silver is also typically found in conditions below what is considered collectible for that particular issue. Silver dollars, half dollars, quarters, and dimes produced between 1935-1964 were made with 90% silver. Before 1935, these coins contained even less silver content. 

The Coinage Act of 1965 removed silver from circulating coins, making older silver coins more valuable for their silver content than their face value. This resulted in many people hoarding these silver coins and melting them down purely for their silver content. 

Today, junk silver is a great option for those only concerned with the silver content of coins rather than condition, designs, or rarity.

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