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Understanding MAC

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By Brittany Fassitt

When Alan Hager came to me with the idea of MACGE , I did not understand its value. I wondered how a simple sticker could increase the value of my collection like a slab would. I never questioned where the prices of my coins came from. I just searched for the date in either the NGC or PCGS database and sold or traded my coins accordingly. It wasnt until I opened up a MAC price guide that things became much clearer.

Its all about POPS!

Yes, see the thing is ALL coins are valued by three things:

Mintage

The number one thing that sets the value of a coin is supply. I understood that the value of a coin is always first determined by how many were made. If everyone has one, then there’s no value.

The major influence on the value or price of a coin is the supply of that particular coin in a particular grade that is available for people to buy. The total possible supply available to the market is determined by the initial mintage of that coin. For most countries, at the end of a year the coin dies with that particular year on it are destroyed and never used again. Hence, once a year is done the supply of that coin for that date is fixed (note: this does not take into account restrikes). In the early years of the United States Mint coin dies were made by hand and were used until they wore out or broke. This resulted in some coins being produced with the previous year’s date but reported as production in the current year.Population

Demand

Many factors influence the demand for a particular type and/or date of coin. In the early 1900s coin boards became popular which greatly grew the coin collecting hobby in the United States. Additionally, marketing campaigns by coin dealers have also increased the demand for certain types of coins. For example, during the depression coin dealer B. Max Mehl advertised all over the country that he would pay $50 for any example of a 1913 Liberty Head Nickel. As a result, many people started collecting coins while they were looking for this valuable coin. In recent history, the 50 State Quarters Series by the U.S. Mint started all whole new generation of coin collectors. In 2009, the Lincoln cent was redesigned and many people became interested in collecting Lincoln cents again. All of these factors were in part responsible for increasing demand and driving up prices and values.

Stickering

This assured me that my coins very graded with accuracy. It gave me comfort to know that I had no spots on any of my coins.

Grade Enhancements

GE – GRADE ENHANCEMENTS– This refers to valuing a coin by taking into consideration features that may not have been considered previously.
For example, in the 1953 mintage, a tiny fraction of the Jefferson nickels has full steps, due to poor die quality that year. The clear majority of the 1953-S Franklin Half Dollars have no Bell Lines and sell for around $80 in MS-65. A 1953-S FBL Franklin Half Dollar in PCGS MS-65 sells for $16,000.00 over 200 times the NON-FBL. However, there are a few 1953-S Franklin Half Dollars that have 90% Full Bell Lines, and those should be designated as such and valued accordingly or about 30% of the Full Bell Lines coin.

Price Guides

This is my favorite part of the MAC experience. Combination Price Guides. A one stop shop.