US Coins

1964 5-cent coin at FUN auction: Market Analysis

A 1964 Jefferson 5-cent piece with the Special Mint set finish used on coins included in SMS sets between 1965 and 1967 sold for $32,900 at Heritage’s 2016 FUN auction.

Original images courtesy of Heritage Auctions

Below is the first of three columns from our own Steve Roach highlighting 5-cent coins from this month's FUN Auction:

Among the many collections offered at Heritage’s Florida United Numismatists auctions held in Tampa Jan. 6 to 11 was the Steve Strom Collection of Jefferson Head 5-cent pieces. In the catalog introduction, Steve reflected on his collecting: “Starting out as a kid and for nearly 50 years Full Step Jeffersons have been a big challenge. Hunting to find the next Full Step. Looking through thousands of nickels to find a better one and then to find an even better one — wow!” Here are three finest-known 5-cent coins from his collection that found new homes.  

The Coin:
1964 Jefferson 5-cent coin, PCGS Special Mint Set Specimen 68 full steps

The Price:

The Story:
The top lot in Strom’s collection offered at FUN was his 1964 Jefferson 5-cent piece with a Special Mint set finish, graded Specimen 68 full steps by Professional Coin Grading Service. The SMS finish was used by the U.S. Mint between 1965 and 1967 as an alternative to Proof sets, but approximately 20 to 50 sets of 1964 coins with an SMS finish are believed to have been produced.

Heritage observed: “This piece shows an amazing, sculptural depth of detail that is uniformly absent on business strikes, yet fully equal to the strike on a proof coin. The finish, however, is nonreflective, with heavy die polishing lines that are a theme with variations on the 1964 SMS coinage.”

One of six certified by PCGS in this grade with none finer, it last sold at Heritage’s April 2009 Central States Numismatic Society auction for $8,625, and at the 2016 FUN auction it sold for $32,900. The massive increase in value is due in part to the increased recognition of this interesting transitional variant.

Keep reading this Market Analysis:

$6,462.50 for MS-68 full steps 2011-D Jefferson 5-cent coin

1953-D Jefferson 5-cent piece in MS-67 full steps

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