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Should I Sell My Gold Coins?

Question: I have some silver and gold coins that I’m tempted to sell, but I’m leery of gold-buying outfits that advertise in the paper. How can I get the best price from a reputable dealer?

— Stan Mayfield, Salem, Ore.

Answer: Your inclination to sell your shiny stuff could be a good one. While gold’s price is up more than 170 percent over the past five years, there’s debate about whether the price will go higher. First, experts say, determine if your coins are simply bullion that reflects the day-to-day price of gold or if they’ve got collectible value. An 1802 Draped Bust Quarter Eagle, for example, could be worth $32,000—far more than the value of the gold in the coin, according to the World Gold Council, a trade group that maintains a vetted list of firms that buy and sell gold. You can also check with the American Numismatic Association.

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