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Would a circulated coin with zero wear be considered MS?

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Here is an example....


The mint strike a coin...it winds up in a bag...that bag is then transferred to the federal reserve bank...the reserve extends this bag of coins out to a retail bank...you go into to the bank to cash your paycheck and are given change from the bag to make up the total amount.


Technically, the coins are in circulation.

At the same time, the only human interaction with the coin was the act of the teller removing the coin from the bag and placing them in the change drawer.

Aside from bag marks...there is really no wear. Granted this is a unique and probably rare situation, but I am evaluating the terminology...not the feasibility.


A MS coin is defined as a coin that has no wear....wear of course being a result of circulation. If a coin was circulated without experiencing wear, is it still MS?


Lets say you define a MS coin as one that has never been circulated...how could that ever be proven? Wear is wear...if it exists you hit the cieling at AU...but without the wear, the concept of circulation has no relavence on the condition of the coin.


Again, I understand that it would the extremely rare occasion that this could occur...but I am not questioning the probability that it might, but rather posing a hypothetical question...given that you received a coin with zero wear from the bank, would it be MS?



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MS just means that the coin has no wear, not that it did not circulate. In fact your hypothetical question is not a rare occurrence at all, it is common to get a ‘mint state’ coin in change from a bank or store.


For instance, let’s say that twenty of us board members got together and I passed around a raw MS coin for all to look at. The coin could be passed around for hours, days, even weeks and as long as everyone handled the coin carefully and correctly it would suffer no wear, therefore it would still be in mint state despite having been ‘in circulation’ for a period of time.


Of course it does not take much time for wear i.e. ‘rub’ to develop on a coin used for normal commerce, so the key would be to get a coin that is still in mint state as soon as possible after it has been removed from its bag or roll.




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Another example:


The coin shop I go to often gives BU 1968 cents in change, straight from rolls. Though he gave them to me in change, they are very pristine, and would no doubt grade MS66+.

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This kinda confirms what I have always felt.

To me, its all about the wear. The history is somewhat irrelevant when evaluating the condition. In a lot of the newer clad coins I see so many examples that are a few hairlines away from a MS designation...I assume because the harder metals wear less than the coins made of silver. I would say that a great deal of the change I get is AU...and in some cases, maybe a few MS60's have been handed to me at stores.


I have heard others argue that the designation is a function of being circulated...I could never buy into that idea. Good to see I am not alone.

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