Coin Values Moving with Precious Metals: Up-Dated 7/26/2021: Gold $1806 | Silver $25.20


1950 Dime Value

1950 dime value starts at a nice minimum of $1.68 each. Minted during the "silver" years of the Roosevelt series, precious metal is a solid base to value. Added premium is found in mint varieties and higher condition examples.

Two of the three varieties of the year are beginning to stand out as collectible in circulated condition. Pleasing circulated examples are now worth above silver content. Special attention is given to recognize both variety and condition.

1950 Roosevelt Dime - Obverse and Reverse

Steps Leading to Value:

  • Step 1: Date and Mintmark Variety - 1950 is a year to accurately identify mint variety. The value chart shows a difference in scarcity of the different date and varieties.
  • Step 2: Grading Condition - Images are used to visualize different stages of preservation. A comparison is made with your coin to narrow a range of condition and value.
  • Step 3: Special Qualities - Recognizing the qualities of a collectible dime over bullion examples is one of the keys to accurate judgement of worth.
1950 Dime Value
 Condition of Coin
DateGoodFineExtremely
Fine
Mint
State
  Roosevelt Dime Values Updated 7/26/2021
1950 $1.68 $1.68 $2.00 $5.29
1950 D $1.68 $1.68 $1.68 $5.29
1950 S $1.68 $1.68 $4.91 $25

All collectors use a method to decide on what a coin is worth and its potential to add to their collection. First is date followed by mint variety. Collections are typically completed including all dates and their varieties. Next, condition of the coin is important as part of the aesthetic appeal of the collection.

Follow the steps to determine the collectability of these early Roosevelt dimes and narrow their value on the charts.

Step 1: | Date and Mintmark Variety Identified

Varieties of 1950 Dimes to Recognize

Starting the new decade of the 1950's saw only moderate production numbers of Roosevelt dimes. The year 1950 recorded a total of just over 117 million dimes struck from three mints. A moderate production total places 1950 as the third lowest mintage year of the silver era.

Significant of the year are two mint varieties with premium values in lightly circulated condition. Circulated silver Roosevelt dimes worth above base silver value are recognized by mintmarks on the reverse.

1950-S Roosevelt Dime

"S" Mintmark on Reverse: San Francisco Mint Struck the Coin

1950-S Roosevelt Dime

Two factors contribute to the premium statue of 1950 San Francisco dimes. Mintage was 20,440,000 a low amount, and importantly, demand for quality pieces indicates few were saved before becoming heavily worn. 1950 San Francisco variety dimes became the fifth lowest date/mint variety of the silver years. Confirm mintmark and then check on the condition in Step 2.

San Francisco placed an "S" mintmark on the reverse to identify its production. Look at the base of the torch on the left side. A small "S" is the variety minted at San Francisco.

1950-D Roosevelt Dime

"D" Mintmark on Reverse: Denver Mint Struck the Coin

1950-D Roosevelt Dime

The Denver mint, centrally located in the country, suppled the area with just under 47 million "D" mintmark dimes in 1950. These remain abundant today and the vast majority trade at their base silver value.

Denver's coinage is identified by the "D" mintmark found on the reverse. Located at the left side of the torch towards the base, the "D" mark confirms Denver struck the coin.

1950 Roosevelt Dime

No Mintmark on Reverse: Philadelphia Mint Struck the Coin

1950 Roosevelt Dime

Low production of any denomination is unusual for Philadelphia. Dimes minted in 1950 only totaled just over 50 million. This became the third lowest year of the silver era Roosevelt series. Overall demand for coinage was low at the time, Philadelphia struck moderate amounts of all denominations.

Premiums for lightly circulated examples is indicating few were saved into collections. In well-worn condition these are still traded at base silver value, grading condition is important to recognize added value.

Confirm the Philadelphia issue by the absence of a mintmark on the reverse. Philadelphia did not use a mintmark in the 1950's. Mintmarks are located at the base of the torch on the left side. If the area is without a mark, the coin was struck at Philadelphia.

Step 2: | Grading Condition Narrows Value Range

Collectible Grades Defines 1950 Dime Value

Recognizing old coins in demand by collectors finds the premium value pieces. Silver is the base to these vintage Roosevelt dimes. A nicely preserved 1950 dime is sought by many.

A grade is assigned to the different stages of wear found on coins. Using specific points of the design compared to example of grades finds a grade match to your coin. Starting with a mint state coin all original details are present helping recognize if wear has occurred.

Mint State Grade

1950 Roosevelt Dime Mint State Grade

Mint State: No wear to the original surface defines coins in Mint State grade. This is the top grade and collectors of Roosevelt dimes seek pleasing examples to include in sets. Luster covering the entire surface (the bright shine) is the condition of a coin when leaving the mint. Because luster is a delicate texture it is easily worn creating dull areas. An inspection of high points to the design confirms the 1950 dime is in Mint State grade.

With a focus on the jaw area near the ear, notice brightness remains over the surface. The texture of the metal causes light to reflect in a bright shine. Any smoothing from wear dulls both the shine and color of the metal. Silver-white of original surfaces is replaced with a silver-grey on worn areas.

Roosevelt's cheek and hair, both high points, are still lustrous and consistent with the lower fields of the coin.

Extremely Fine Grade

Roosevelt Dime Extremely Fine Grade

Extremely Fine: A small amount of light wear visible on the high points of design is defining the example coin in Extremely Fine grade. Light wear without connecting major elements is important to recognize.

Roosevelt's jaw near the ear is smooth from wear. A small flatness is seen; however, the jaw is still a raised contour complete and separate of the cheek above. Raised areas of the face are showing only very small flat areas. Keeping the coin in Extremely Fine grade is none of the flatness connects.

Crisp details remain throughout the hair and his ear remains well defined. A pleasing coin.

Bullion Condition Examples

Silver Roosevelt Dimes in Bullion Condition

Bullion Condition Quality: A coin with visible wear causing the merging of design elements is a quality of coin that trades based on its silver content. Bullion condition Roosevelts dimes are lacking fine line details and raised contours of the design.

Notice the jaw is a continuous flat area extending from the chin to ear. Also, a flat connection is made with the cheek above the jaw. A large amount of wear has reduced the high contours of facial features to connected flatness.

Line details of Roosevelt's hair are missing above the ear. Combined, the lack of detail has reduced the grade below Extremely Fine and collector demand. Bullion quality 1950 dimes have a nice silver value and readily trade in the silver market.

How to Video: Grading Roosevelt Dimes

Detecting the absence of wear identifies the high quality 1950 dime. On many dimes wear is easy to see. Recognizing subtle points to higher condition is part of grading.

Video, Images and Descriptions | Grading Roosevelt Dimes

Step 3: | Special Qualities Enhancing Value

Collector 1950 Roosevelt Dimes Rise Above Bullion Value

A special quality of a 1950 Roosevelt dime is the beginnings of a premium in the circulated condition category. Collector demand to find pleasing examples now requires a value above base silver worth to obtain an example. Lightly circulated 1950 Philadelphia and San Francisco issues are a collectible coin and not considered bullion quality.

Close-Up of 1950 Dime

Supply is the important part of the value equation now affecting how much these 1950 silver dimes are worth. A balance between demand from collectors and those interested in a 1950 dime for its silver content has shifted. Collectors assembling sets in circulated grades and desiring eye pleasing examples are noting a lack of supply. Premiums for nice coins is the result.

Give special attention to any 1950 Philadelphia and San Francisco dime. Inspect the reverse closely and look for examples displaying no more than light circulation wear. A coin in demand is one with the majority of detail remaining, especially fine line detail.

Points to recognize.

  • Left side olive branch shows fine vein lines in center of leaves
  • Right side oak branch leaves are fully defined and separate of each
  • Center torch remains with visible vertical lines, and horizontal bands are complete and raised
  • Flames of the torch are well detailed

Over time many lightly circulated, silver Roosevelt dimes have the potential to begin rising above base silver worth. Scarcity due to supply is now affecting the early 1950's silver era dimes and meeting a strong demand.

References

U.S. Mint. 1951 U.S. Mint Annual Report https://nnp.wustl.edu/library/book/342

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