The Rare Coin Values Index follows the percent
change movements of 87 carefully selected United
States coins. The purpose of the Index is to assess the overall
direction of the U.S.
rare coin market over a period beginning in January 2000 to the current
Rare Coin Values Index: Since Year 2000
The chart above graphs the combined percent change in retail
prices for 87 rare United States coins since
January 2000, starting at an index baseline of 100. The purpose of the
Index is to estimate the direction and strength of the market for rare
United States coins. The coin market was very strong from 2003-09,
reaching its peak in March/April 2009 at an Index rating of 370.51. For
the next dozen years or so, the Index continued to move higher, albeit
at a much slower pace, not breaching the 400-point level until late
2017. The Index in early 2023 continues to rise, after popping the 500
point plateau for the first time in late 2022. See chart below for blow up of
Index movements over the last 12 months.
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The next Rare Coin Values Index chart focuses on
last 12 months. It is generated from the same body of data as the
chart above, except it's "blown up" to give the reader a closer view of
the most recent coin market activity.
Rare Coin Values Index: Over Last 12 Months
This chart is a close up of the most recent 12 months of Rare
Coin Values Index activity. As we enter Q2 2023, the coin market
continues to move beyond the 500 point level. In April, the Index moved
higher by 2.39 points, hitting yet at an all-time high of 509.75. The
pace for 2023 has slowed a bit, but this is not an indicator the rare
coin marketplace is ready for a nosedive. Contrast this to what
occurred in the late 1970s and again in the late 1980s, when the market
direction plummeted drastically following a ridiculously fast run up in
coin prices, because much of euphoria was built on false premises.
Today, the rare coin market is strong and stable, and
continues to climb at a steady, but not spectacular, pace. The Rare
Coin Value Index is based
on the combined percent
for 87 rare United States coins and has been
monthly since January 2000.
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How is the Index calculated?
Once a month, for each coin in the Index, the
current retail value is
estimated and compared to the previous month's estimated value, and a
percent difference is computed (it could be positve, negative, or no
change). The percent difference for all 87 coins are added together and
divided by 87 to come up with an average percent difference of the
entire group. Thus, each
coin in the Index carries equal weight. Let's call this result the
Current Month Index, or CMI.
The previous month's Index score is multiplied by (1+CMI) to arrive at
an updated Index score.
How should I interpret the Index score?
You should interpret the Index score as a
percent change in value collectively of the 87 coins
that comprise the
which were chosen to represent the rare U.S. coin market as a whole.
The Index begins in January 2000 at a baseline score of 100. Since, for
example, the Index reached 500 in November 2022, you could say overall
prices of rare U.S. coins quintupled over that nearly 23 year period.
In April 2023, the Index stands at 509.75, indicating the rare coin
market as a whole is
about 5.10 times higher than it was in January 2000.
Where does the value data come from?
We obtain coin values to input into the Index
computation from a variety of widely respected coin price guides.
How were the 87 coins in the Index chosen?
Our objective was to choose a cross section of
coins whose value fluctuations represented that of the overall market
for rare United States coins. We focused on key dates the serious
collector of average to above average means commonly aspires to own.
The vast majority of coins tracked in the Index are in circulated
grades, typical of
the examples residing within the holdings of the rank and file
collector. There are no ultra rarieties in the Index.
Which coins were chosen for the Index?
Meet the 87 coins that comprise the Rare Coin
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