Coin Collector Blog

Mullen Coins Collection Blog provides valuable articles and content about coin collections, rare coins, currency, antiquities and interesting reviews of news and events within the numismatic community.
Learn about how to spot counterfeit coins and currency, how to avoid common counterfeits, and recent news about counterfeiting coins and currency.

Buy Gold Only through a Reputable Dealer

buy gold

In an earlier blog we discussed the various forms of physical gold that buyers can purchase and invest in and how their value corresponds to the market “spot price” at any given time. Gold has always been valuable, but how valuable it is currently corresponds to any number of factors. In a souring economy or one with unstable investment options, gold can look like a safe haven for the investor. In a booming economy the demand for gold tends to abate somewhat.

While gold is a solid investment choice and Mullen Coins endorses the philosophy of investing 5%-10% of one’s total assets in physical gold and silver as a hedge against the unknown, it’s important to be careful when purchasing. There are many gold scams out there for the untried or unwary buyer. In fact, there are so many that the Federal Trade Commission has a page on its website addressing questions about buying gold, and recently the office of the Texas Attorney General issued its own tips for avoiding fraud in the gold market.

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Europe Is Fighting Counterfeiting

€50 banknote

We’ve discussed before what a problem counterfeiting is in the coin world. In recent years counterfeit coins have proliferated in America so frequently, many of them imported from China via online sales, that the U.S. Mint has issued warnings. A few years ago, when the stock market was in freefall and real estate rapid lost value, collecting coins became not just a hobby but an investment for many people. The characteristics about coins that make them valuable - origin, condition, scarcity, and history - do not fluctuate much over time and, unlike bank accounts, coins are not hackable (although they can, of course, be stolen). Counterfeiting is a significant threat to collectors, however, and anyone involved with coins has an incentive to stop it.

In April the European Central Bank issued new €50 banknotes they designed to be far less vulnerable to counterfeiting. These orange-yellow bills were designed in consultation with Stanford neuroscientist David Eagleman to so that anyone - not just currency experts - would be able to spot a fake. The usual security measures are present, including watermarks, color-changing inks, threads, and microprinting, but instead of relying on high tech measures, the ECB took a new tack: focusing on face recognition. This is because the general populace doesn’t look at their money very carefully and the human brain isn’t designed to spot inconsistencies in objects that often decorate paper money.

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How to Detect Counterfeits

How to Detect Counterfeits
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As a Grand Rapids coin dealer, we at Mullen Coins have an especially strong interest in the detection of counterfeit and altered coins. In point of fact, anyone who deals with rare coins will develop a basic understanding of how to detect counterfeits, whether out of interest or necessity. If you are considering purchasing a rare date coin, or if you are looking to sell your coins, you may need to pay special attention to authenticity.

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Grand Rapids Coin Buyers Beware of Counterfeit Coins

Grand Rapids Coin Buyers Beware of Counterfeit Coins

In my recent post “Hidden Treasures – Rare Coins in Grand Rapids,” I talked about the prudent Michigan State student who scored with his Grand Rapids coin garage sale find. His trove included a very collectible coin – an 1893-S Morgan Dollar. He wisely chose to authenticate his find with a local Grand Rapids coin dealer (Mullen Coins), and the rest is history.

 

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