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Are Silver Proof 50p coins from The Royal Mint a good investment?

What is a Silver Proof 50p coin?

It is 8g of .925 Sterling Silver (92.5% Silver, 7.5% other metal) struck using proof finish quality dies to produce a coin.

How much is 8g of Sterling Silver worth?

Pure silver is currently about £0.60 per gram, so (8 x £0.60) x .925 = £4.44

Sherlock Holmes Silver Proof 50p

Royal Mint Silver Proof 50p Coins: 2016 to 2020

When you buy a silver proof coin, you are buying more than just the metal of course - there are costs associated with the production of the coin and packaging.

How much does a Silver Proof 50p from The Royal Mint cost?

The current recommended retail price and initial selling price is normally £55 for coins that do not include any colour printing and £65 for those that do.

Silver Proof 50p COA Number
My coin is a limited edition, does that mean the future price of my Silver Proof 50p will be higher than the price I paid?

Secondary market prices for silver proof 50p coins are dependent on a number of factors, including subject matter desirability and maximum mintage numbers for the presentation and the coin itself.

Limited Edition Presentation (LEP) – maximum number of the coin presented in the same packaging.

Maximum Coin Mintage (MCM) – total maximum number of the coin that could be produced, demand will determine production numbers, but if this number is reached – no more are produced.

This is a table showing all Silver Proof 50p coin releases since 2016 – there are 39 products and 14 (about 36%) are currently worth more than the original selling price.

CoinYearColour PrintedRRP on releaseCurrent PriceLEPMCMTotal Sales
Team GB2016No£50£3540004456
Battle of Hastings2016No£50£70300060002338
Beatrix Potter Anniversary2016No£50£210775077507471
Peter Rabbit2016Yes£55£525150001600015495
Jemima Puddle-Duck2016Yes£55£125150001600015921
Mrs Tiggy-Winkle2016Yes£55£70150001600015943
Squirrel Nutkin2016Yes£55£75150001600015893
The Tale of Peter Rabbit2017Yes£60£39300004000039384
Mr Jeremy Fisher2017Yes£60£27300004000035749
Tom Kitten2017Yes£60£29300004000034140
Benjamin Bunny2017Yes£60£28300004000035821
Sir Isaac Newton2017No£50£57400070003875
Representation of the People Act2018No£55£351918
Peter Rabbit2018Yes£60£323000045000
Flopsy Bunny2018Yes£60£293000045000
The Tailor of Gloucester2018Yes£60£283000045000
Mrs Tittlemouse2018Yes£60£273000045000
Paddington at the Station2018Yes£65£346000075000
Paddington at Buckingham Palace2018Yes£65£346000075000
The Snowman2018Yes£65£511500020000
The Gruffalo2019Yes£65£382500030000
Stephen Hawking2019No£55£6355007000
Peter Rabbit2019Yes£65£443000035000
Sherlock Holmes2019No£55£5360007500
Paddington at the Tower of London2019Yes£65£472500032500
Paddington at St Paul's Cathedral2019Yes£65£502500032500
50 years of the fifty pence2019No£55£5635003510
The Gruffalo & The Mouse2019Yes£65£612500030000
Wallace & Gromit2019Yes£65£502500027500
The Snowman & James2019Yes£65£622500027500
Exit from the E.U2020No£55£524700047000
Peter Rabbit2020Yes£65£641450015000
Rosalind Franklin2020No£55£6535004195

There are a few other considerations that can impact value. Prices presented here are based on secondary market sales of the coin in original packaging with a non-remarkable Certificate of Authenticity (COA) number.

COA Number

Low or special COA numbers can increase the price that can be achieved when selling – for example 0001 would likely sell for more than any other number.

Coin Grading

If the coin has been removed from the original packaging and graded at a high grade such as PF70 – it is likely to be worth more than an ungraded coin in original packaging.

Royal Mint Silver Proof 50p Toning
Coin Toning

If the coin (metal) has begun changing colour due to the effects of the environment / packaging, it is very likely that the coin will be less desirable and therefore worth less.

There are some rare exceptions where toning can look good and increase value – for example rainbow toning may occur in certain conditions on specific coins – but silver 50p coins tend to see light brown toning which make the coin look dirty and is not attractive.

The coin in this picture is the 2019 Stephen Hawking Silver Proof 50p.

Silver Proof 50p first signs of toning
How to check your Silver Proof 50p's for signs of toning

You can watch the How to check if your Royal Mint Silver Proof 50p is toning video on the Coin Hunter YouTube channel.

Lift the coin in the capsule out of the presentation box and take it to a window or outside where there is plenty of natural daylight.

Closely inspect both sides, especially the obverse (heads side) as it seems to be more prone to toning. If you have a phone camera that can zoom and focus clearly on parts of the coin - use it to help you inspect the coin, as the first signs of toning can be difficult to see with the naked eye.

The coin shown here (2019 Battle of Hastings from the Celebrating 50 Years of the 50p Military Set) is beginning to tone, it is just possible to see the slight discolouration near to the edge of the coin.

Silver Proof Heroic Acts Victoria Cross 50p

Toning that can just be seen on close inspection with the naked eye, can be seen in great detail and very clearly with a high quality phone camera.

This is the 2019 Heroic Acts Victoria Cross 50p from the same silver proof coin set as the 50p obverse shown in the image above.

You can see the dark brown reaction in the metal edge closest to the black foam material that surrounds the coin.

Whilst coin toning is a natural chemical process that occurs when something reacts with the surface of the metal - if coins are kept in optimal conditions, the process should occur slowly and would normally be seen on coins much older than those dated 2019.

Silver Proof coins from 2017 that have been kept in the exact same conditions as the coins shown above are currently showing no signs of toning.

The only difference of note is that the foam material that surrounds and touches the coins is white and appears to be made from a different material.

To investigate further, samples of both materials are being prepared to be sent to a testing lab. The lab will be looking for anything in the material that could have reacted with silver or the other metals to trigger or facilitate a chemical reaction.

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