Are Presidential Dollar Rolls a Good Investment?
"We are opening the vault for a limited time only. Don't miss this golden opportunity."
|U.S. Presidential Dollar Rolls|
These were the words that greeted me when I opened the flyer that came in the mail today. The flyer was from a well known marketer of collectibles and billed itself as "The smart way to collect Presidential Dollars."
The offer was for rolls of 12 Presidential dollars for "Only $34.95" plus $4.95 for shipping and service. That is more than 200% over face value for coins that are currently in circulation.
Not a great investment
The offer asks you to consider "a similar series of U.S. President stamps . . . [that] sell today for 12 times or more than their original face value." It includes a chart showing what a great investment these Presidential stamps issued in 1938 turned out to be. The chart showed the stamps rising in value by 1,200%!
Ironically, their chart starts with the stamps at face value and doesn’t include a 200% premium paid upfront as you would pay with their Presidential coins offer. More importantly, what do these Presidential stamps have to do with the future value of Presidential dollars?
As far as I’m concerned, nothing justifies paying a 200% premium when I can get uncirculated coins for face value.
|Since this article was first published, the U.S. Mint has stopped manufacturing Presidential dollars for circulation and has revised the Direct Ship program to eliminate the free shipping option.|
Collecting at face value
As a coin collector, I am a big fan of the new Presidential dollars. I like the series better than the state quarters. But when it comes to buying the new dollars, I like to get mine at face value. My Presidential dollars are part of a collection, not an investment. Although it would be nice to have them eventually go up in value, I collect them with the expectation that they will never be a great investment.
Where can you get rolls at face value?
My 10 year old niece collects rolls of Presidential dollars. But she pays only $25 for a roll of 25. Where does she get them? From her bank. Unfortunately, not every bank has the rolls. The two banks closest to my house both have Presidential dollars, but neither has the rolls. However, after a few minutes of calling on the phone, I located one that does.
Where else can you get them at face value?
The U.S. Mint has a direct ship program that will send you 10 rolls at face value plus free shipping. It's the same as getting them from the bank. The catch is that you have to order 10 rolls and you can't specify which mint. But it's not like you are stuck with the other $225 worth of coins. You can break open the rolls and spend them. After all, that's the whole point of the program! One major drawback of this program for collectors is that they have not included every presidential coin in the program. Until the huge mintages of the early issues have been dispersed, this is unlikely to change.
But the U.S. Mint says the rolls are "circulating $1 coin rolls" and not uncirculated
Let's be realistic. The coins from the direct ship program are uncirculated with regards to grading. The whole point of the direct ship program is to get the coins into circulation. The banks aren't doing it so the U.S. Mint is going straight to the consumer.